Sandesh Jhingan wins AIFF Player of the Year

Sandesh Jhingan spoke on his comeback to football and Igor Stimac, who was recently handed a contract extension for India.

sandesh Jhingan

Sandesh Jhingan, the Indian National team and ATK Mohun Bagan defender, Sandesh Jhingan was named the AIFF Player of the Year for the season 2020-21. The defender lifted his first award of this sort after having an excellent run both domestically and internationally for the Indian National side.

In 2014, Jhingan had received the AIFF Men’s Emerging Player of the Year award. Jhingan who was struggling with injuries the previous season and missed a major chunk of the action returned to action for ATK Mohun Bagan this season and lifted the club to a second spot finish in the Hero Indian Super League.

Sandesh Jhingan made an excellent comeback to football this year after suffering an ACL tear last year

Sandesh Jhingan

The Green and Maroons had a stellar comeback season in which he made a total of 22 appearances for his club and featured in all 4 of India’s international matches with three of them being World Cup qualifiers. The 28-year old defender is now eyeing the 2023 Asian Cup qualification and wants to give his best in the upcoming qualifiers.

When quizzed on his upcoming goals, Sandesh Jhingan said, “Our aim is to be in the Asian Cup in China. We want to make it better this time, there’s a lot of passion, determination, desire and enthusiasm going into this Asian Cup qualifiers.”

“Now it’s about doing well in the Asian Qualifiers and then stepping up each time. We want to do really well and play the Asian Cup. We want to do much better than last time and try to qualify from the group and play the knockout stage, that’s the plan now.”

The stalwart defender also gave his opinion on India’s men’s team national coach Igor Stimac who was recently handed a contract extension by the AIFF.

Jhingan said, “He (Stimac) has played at the highest level – the World Cup, the Premier League. So just being around him is a learning process. He helped me a lot and I’m really happy to have him as the national team coach.”

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Somdeb is a Football and NFL writer at FirstSportz since 2020. He has been interested in football since 2014 and is currently pursuing a Master's degree in Economics. He is an avid football and cricket fan and tries to channel his passion for the game into his writing,