I have been sleeping and waking up with football throughout: Sunil Chhetri

New Delhi: Sunil Chhetri was pleased after being named as the All India Football Federation’s (AIFF) Player of the Year on Friday.

The 29 year old has been in a rich vein of form for Bengaluru FC scoring eight goals from 14 matches this term and also is the top scorer for India with 43 goals.

“I have nothing but appreciation and gratefulness for this honour bestowed upon me. This is the third time I have won this laurel but trust me when I tell you that it gives me as much joy as when I won it for the first time,” he said.

2013 was an year to mark for Chhetri as he finally laid his hands of the I-League trophy for the first time in his career. However he was quick to dismiss that he was on the lookout for personal awards.

“Football has been something I have been sleeping with and waking to all these years and recognitions like these only reaffirm my decision to dedicate all I have to playing this game. That said, in all these years of training and playing professionally, I have never been one to chase personal awards.”

He expressed gratitude to every club he plied his trade for and the Indian FA for considering him deserved to win the honour.

“I would like to take this chance to thank the All India Football Federation (AIFF) and the clubs that I have played for – right from my first club to Bengaluru FC where I am currently playing, for giving me the chances they have.”