Gurpreet Singh Sandhu or Sunil Chhetri? - Which Indian player has played the most number of minutes under Igor Stimac?

Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Igor Stimac, Sunil ChhetriAIFF media

India are all set to play the third round of the 2023 AFC Asian Cup qualifiers after finishing third in their group in the second round of the joint 2022 World Cup and 2023 Asian Cup qualifiers. 

Igor Stimac's side will now have to wait for the updated FIFA rankings which will be revealed June 18, 2021, on the basis of which they will find if they stand a chance of drawing to pot 1 of the 2023 Asian Cup qualifying third. The draw will take on June 24.

It was a mixed-bag experience for the Blue Tigers who scored six goals in eight matches but conceded only seven times during the campaign. Against higher-ranked Oman and Qatar, Stimac's side conceded only four goals and they had also managed to hold the reigning Asian champions Qatar to a goalless draw in the first leg in Doha.

The Igor Stimac era in Indian football saw international debuts of as many as 20 Indian footballers over the course of two years. FC Goa midfielder Glan Martins was the only player who made his debut under Stimac during the qualifiers.

Sahal Abdul Samad Curacao India King's Cup 2019

It has been a testing experience for the Croatian coach since taking charge of the Indian team as their head coach in May 2019. The biggest challenge that the Croatian faced as India's coach was the 16 months gap where the Indian national team did not play a single game due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. After a busy 2019, where the Blue Tigers played 10 matches under Stimac's tutelage, not a single international match was played in 2020. 

Thus after playing their last competitive game in November 2019, it was only in March 2021, that Stimac got to reassemble the squad. India played two friendly matches against Oman and UAE in March 2021.

India have played a total of 15 matches in the Igor Stimac era so far out of which the team has won twice. 

Under Stimac a total of 41 players represented the Indian national team and the players who have played the most number of minutes in the last two years are Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Sunil Chhetri and Rahul Bheke.

Which player has played the most number of minutes under Stimac?

PlayerMinutes PlayedMatches
Gurpreet Singh Sandhu108012
Sunil Chhetri92411
Rahul Bheke89611
Udanta Singh89411
Manvir Singh82213
Sandesh Jhingan7599
Adil Khan70610
Ashique Kuruniyan6579
Anirudh Thapa6478
Subhasish Bose6117
Pritam Kotal5266
Brandon Fernandes5158
Amarjit Singh3775
Suresh Wangjam3755
Mandar Rao Dessai3735
Lallianzuala Chhangte3728
Sahal Abdul Samad3357
Rowllin Borges2974
Amrinder Singh2703
Chinglensana Singh2703
Glan Martins2483
Raynier Fernandes2175
Vinit Rai2124
Bipin Singh2014
Farukh Choudhary2015
Narender Gahlot1903
Pronay Halder1644
Akash Mishra1553
Lalengmawia Ralte1524
Anas Edathodika1292
Mohammad Yasir1193
Liston Colaco1164
Ashutosh Mehta901
Jerry Lalrinzuala901
Mashoor Shereef902
Nikhil Poojary681
Jobby Justin572
Balwant Singh511
Ishan Pandita492
Jeakson Singh461
Michael Soosairaj231

Further reading

How has India performed under Stimac?

Every Indian starting lineup in Stimac era

Debutants under Igor Stimac