Gurpreet Singh Sandhu

Gurpreet Singh Sandhu (born 3 February 1992) is an Indian professional footballer who plays as a goalkeeper for the Indian club Bengaluru and India national football team. Sandhu was named captain of the India national team for the friendly match against Puerto Rico on 3 September,[2] a match India won 4–1.[3]

Gurpreet Singh Sandhu
Sandhu playing for East Bengal
Personal information
Full name Gurpreet Singh Sandhu
Date of birth (1992-02-03) 3 February 1992[1]
Place of birth Chamkaur Sahib,[1] Punjab, India
Height 1.98 m (6 ft 6 in)[1]
Playing position Goalkeeper
Club information
Current team
Number 1
Youth career
2000–2009 St. Stephen's FA
2009–2010 East Bengal
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2009–2014 East Bengal 43 (0)
2010–2011Pailan Arrows (loan) 0 (0)
2014–2017 Stabæk 3 (0)
2017– Bengaluru 47 (0)
National team
2010 India U19 10 (0)
2010–2012 India U23 9 (0)
2011– India 38 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 26 August 2019
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 21:10, 19 November 2019 (UTC)

He has achieved several distinctions: the inaugural Indian to play a competitive match for the first team of a top-division European club; fifth Indian to play professionally in Europe succeeding Mohammed Salim, Baichung Bhutia, Sunil Chhetri and Subrata Pal; the first Indian to play in the UEFA Europa League.[4]

Early life

Gurpreet was born on 3 February 1992 in Mohali, Punjab, India, part of the Chandigarh tri-city.

Club career

Early career

Gurpreet took up the game of football at the age of eight and joined the St Stephen's Academy in 2000.[5] After good performances at the St Stephen's Academy, Gurpreet was selected for his state youth team, the Punjab U16s. He made his youth state level debut in 2006 in Haldwani.[5] He stayed at St. Stephen's Academy until 2009 when he joined I-League side East Bengal as a youth player and spend the rest of 2009 playing for the Kolkata-based teams' youth team.[6]

East Bengal

In 2010, Gurpreet officially signed a professional contract with East Bengal and made five appearances for East Bengal before the end of the 2009–10 season. For the 2010–11 season, Gurpreet was loaned out to Pailan Arrows, seeking regular game time but ended the season with no caps for Indian Arrows, as they were called then. He started the 2011–12 season as the second choice goalkeeper for East Bengal during the 2011 Federation Cup, but after the Federation Cup, Gurpreet took over as the first choice 'keeper for East Bengal's I-League campaign. He started in first game of the 2011–12 I-League campaign in their 0–1 loss to Churchill Brothers.[7] He made his debut in continental competitions in Asia on 6 March 2012 in the AFC Cup against Al-Oruba as East Bengal lost the match 0–1.[8]


Sandhu signed for Norwegian club Stabæk on 15 August 2014.[9][10] On 18 January 2015, he made his senior debut for the club in a friendly match against second-tier side Follo in a 4–1 win.[11] After featuring in a number of cup games, including Stabæk's entire 2016 cup run,[12] he made his league debut in late May 2016 in an away match against IK Start, in the process the inaugural Indian to play in a European top division league.[13]

On 30 June 2016, Sandhu became the inaugural Indian to feature in a UEFA Europa League match, starting the first leg of Stabæk's Europa League First qualifying round tie against Connah's Quay Nomads at Belle Vue in Rhyl, Wales. Sandhu played 30 minutes before being replaced by Sayouba Mandé.[14][15] Sandhu left Stabæk in August 2017 to return to India.[16]

Bengaluru FC

In August 2017, Gurpreet joined Bengaluru from Stabæk for undisclosed transfer amount. He made his debut for Bengaluru against April 25 Sports Club in the AFC cup knockout stage and his league debut was against Mumbai City, keeping a clean sheet.[17]

On 13 March 2018, Sandhu extended his contract until May 2023.[18]

International career

Gurpreet made his debut for the India U19s against the Iraq U19s in the 2010 AFC U-19 Championship qualification on 5 November 2009.[19]

He was then surprisingly called up to the senior Indian squad of 23 for the 2011 AFC Asian Cup. He made his debut against Turkmenistan in a 1–1 draw.[20] He was called up to the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier squad against Nepal but was unused in both legs.[21] Gurpreet made his second appearance for the senior team against Iran in a 2018 World Cup qualifier at Bangalore, starting in a 0–3 defeat.[22] He made his next appearance against Turkmenistan in a 2–1 loss on 8 October. He also kept a clean-sheet against Guam on 12 November 2015, a game that ended 1–0. He kept his second clean sheet vs Sri Lanka in a 2–0 win in the SAFF Suzuki Cup 2015. In 2016, he captained the Indian national team against Puerto Rico and played an essential defensive role against Kyrgyzstan in a 2019 AFC Asian Cup qualification game in 2017.[23]

2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers AFC

In the first game of 2022 FIFA world cup qualifiers, he made his 35th appearance for the team against Oman on 5 September 2019 where he conceded 2 goals as India lost the match 1-2.

But in the 2nd match of 2022 World Cup Qualifiers Gurpreet was captained as Sunil Chettri did not play against 2019 Asian Cup champions Qatar. Gurpreet saved about 20 shots on target from Qatar and became a hero for India. Due to his heroic saves, India successfully draw against Qatar 0-0.


As of 13 October 2019[24]
National teamYearAppsGoals

Personal life

Gurpreet is also a fan of former Manchester United goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar and Indian International goalkeeper Subrata Pal.[5] He is a graduate of DAV College in Chandigarh.

Career statistics


As of 30 July 2019[25][26][24]
Club Season League Cup [27] Other [28] Continental [29] Total
East Bengal 2009–10 I-League 50000050
2011–12 160000040200
2012–13 140000070210
2013–14 80005000130
East Bengal total 4300050110590
Pailan Arrows (loan) 2010–11 I-League 00000000
Stabæk 2014 Tippeligaen 00000000
2015 00100010
2016 1040001060
2017 Eliteserien20200040
Stabæk total 30700010110
Bengaluru 2017–18 Indian Super League1904040270
2018–19 200100020230
Bengaluru total 390500060500
Career total 850120501801200



East Bengal
Bengaluru FC


Golden glove: 2018-19


  1. "Gurpreet Singh Sandhu". Notednames. Retrieved 22 January 2019.
  2. Nilanjan Datta (2 September 2016). "Young India 'Ready' to take on Puerto Rico". All India Football Federation.
  3. "'Fantastic Four' for India to outwit Puerto Rico". All India Football Federation. 3 September 2016. Retrieved 17 August 2017.
  4. "Constantine has made an impact on 'character building:' Gurpreet". All India Football Federation. 31 August 2016.
  5. "Gurpreet Singh Sandu". FS Sports. Retrieved 10 March 2012.
  6. Kallol Das (9 November 2009). "East Bengal signs India u-19 Goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu". East Bengal: The Real Power. Archived from the original on 15 March 2012. Retrieved 10 March 2012.
  7. "East Bengal 0–1 Churchill Brothers: Opara's First Half-Strike Enough For The Goans To Register An Away Victory". Retrieved 10 March 2012.
  8. "East Bengal 0–1 Al Orouba: The Red and Gold pay for a defensive lapse in spite of being the superior team in both halves". Retrieved 10 March 2012.
  9. Gurpreet Singh Sandhu (15 August 2014). "A proud day for my country and for me as I am pleased to announce I have signed for @stabaekfc". @Gurpreet GK. Retrieved 15 August 2014 via Twitter.
  10. Basu, Hindol (18 August 2014). "Gurpreet Signs 3-year deal with Norwegian football club". Times of India. Retrieved 20 August 2014.
  11. Shobhita Dutt. "Gurpreet Singh Sandhu Is The First Indian Footballer In 79 Years To Play For A Proper European Club". India Times. Retrieved 20 January 2015.
  12. Strømnes, André; Waagsether, Simen Solum (27 May 2016). "Singh bør spille på førstelaget". Budstikka (in Norwegian).
  13. "Gurpreet Singh Sandhu becomes the first Indian to play in European top flight". Football Channel Asia. 2 June 2016. Retrieved 2 June 2016.
  14. Mihir Vasavda (1 July 2016). "Gurpreet Singh Sandhu makes his Europa League bow". Indian Express.
  15. "Connah's Quay 0-0 Stabæk". UEFA. 30 June 2016. Retrieved 15 October 2017.
  16. "Gurpreet Singh Sandhu leaves Norway club Stabaek FC, likely to join Bengaluru FC". Hindustan Times. HT Media. 17 August 2017.
  17. "Bengaluru FC sign India's No.1 Gurpreet Singh Sandhu". Bengaluru FC. 17 August 2017. Retrieved 17 August 2017.
  18. "Gurpreet signs on with Bengaluru FC for five more years". Bengaluru FC. 13 March 2018. Retrieved 13 March 2018.
  19. "AFC U19 CHAMPIONSHIP 2010 MATCH SUMMARY". Asian Football Confederation. Retrieved 10 March 2012.
  20. "Turkmenistan VS. India 1 - 1". Soccerway. Perform Group. 25 March 2011. Retrieved 8 May 2013.
  21. Bera, Kaustav (2 March 2015). "Constantine selects final 26-man India shortlist for 2018 World Cup qualifier against Nepal".
  22. "India 0-3 IR Iran". 8 September 2015.
  23. Abhijit Bharali (1 June 2017). "Real Madrid or Barcelona? Indian goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu takes his pick". SportsKeeda.
  24. "Gurpreet Singh Sandhu". National Football Teams. Benjamin Strack-Zimmerman. Retrieved 7 June 2018.
  25. "Gurpreet Singh Sandhu - Football Career Transfers and Statistics". SoccerPunter.
  26. Gurpreet Singh Sandhu at Soccerway
  27. includes Indian Federation Cup, Norwegian Football Cup and Indian Super Cup
  28. includes Durand Cup and IFA Shield
  29. includes AFC Cup, AFC Champions League and UEFA Europa League
  30. "Gurpreet wins the Arjuna Award". Indian Super League. 19 August 2019.
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