Goalkeeper becomes 1st Indian player to play for top European club since 1936

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New Delhi, Jan 19: Former East Bengal goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu became the first Indian footballer since 1936 to play for an European club taking part in the first tier of the country's football league.

The 22-year-old player has been signed by Norway-based club Stabaek FC in August last year and made the first appearance of his European career during the 4-1 victory over Follo Fotballklubb.

Indian goalie in top European club

Sandhu, who was born in Mohali in Punjab in February 1992, is the fifth Indian player to play for Europe after Mohammed Salim (Celtic), Bhaichung Bhutia (Bury FC), Sunil Chhetri (Sporing Lison 'B') and Subrata Pal (FC Vestsjaelland) but of them, only Salim has represented a top-division club in 1936.

Sandhu has played in over 100 matches for East Bengal. He made his debut for India U-19s against Iraq U-19s in the 2010 AFC U-19 Championship qualification in November 2009.

He was called up for the Indian national football squad for the 2011 AFC Asian Cup.

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