Chhetri joins Messi as second highest goalscorer in internationals among active players

Ruben Hill
June 12, 2018

"India is somewhere between a sleeping giant and a rising competitor", the Swiss said.

Talismanic Indian football team captain Sunil Chhetri on Sunday became the joint second highest global goal scorer among active players along with Argentine superstar Lionel Messi with his 64th strike against Kenya in the Intercontinental Cup summit clash at Mumbai.

"There will definitely be two games sometime in December, before the Asian Cup".

While Kenya will seek to take revenge of their humiliating loss in the league stage, the home team will look to end the tournament that witnessed an outpouring of emotions after Chhetri's impassioned plea asking fans to turn up for India games, on a positive note.

With a goal and three assists, Sarpreet Singh was the standout, continuing a strong start to a year where he has become the most promising New Zealand player to emerge since Thomas in 2014.

The 19-year-old sparked Thursday's turnaround, providing the assists for Andre De Jong and substitute Moses Dyer to do the rest.

Atudo who was voted the man of the match after scoring a brace against Chinese Taipei insists that Kenya knows what to do in the finals. "You're not going to have 11 Sandesh's or 11 Chhetri's or 11 Thapa's (referring to Sandesh Jhingan, Sunil Chhetri and Anirudh Thapa)".

"It was time for others to come in and stake a claim for their place". Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo leads the active players' scoring tally with 81 goals from 150 matches. Chhetri is now joint-active second highest active goal scorer in worldwide football.

India were back as a full strength side for the final after the head coach Stephen Constantine effected seven changes in the last league game against New Zealand, which they lost 1-2. True, there's little Constantine can do if teams invited by the All India Football Federation to compete in such events send weakened squads.

India thumped Chinese Taipei 5-0 in the opening game before grabbing another victory over Kenya with a 3-0 scoreline.

Alongside India in Group A of the 2019 AFC Asian Cup, are hosts UAE, Thailand and Bahrain.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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