India Clinches SAFF Championship 2023 with Penalty Shootout Victory

In the SAFF Championship 2023 final, Sunil Chhetri and his team emerged triumphant with a thrilling 5-4 penalty shootout victory against Kuwait. Gurpreet Singh Sandhu played a crucial role by making a decisive save that secured the win for Igor Stimac’s side. Let’s dive into the details of this remarkable match and celebrate India’s ninth SAFF Championship title. The final match was between India and Kuwait showcased a remarkable display of skill, determination, and teamwork. The match captivated football fans worldwide with its intense moments and a thrilling conclusion.

India defeated Kuwait 5-4 in a penalty shootout to win this title on Tuesday. The match was tied 1-1 after 120 minutes of play. Shabaib Al Khaldi scored first goal of thjis match and gave Kuwait the lead in the 14th minute, but indian forward Lallianzuala Chhangte equalized for India in the 39th minute. The two teams were unable to break the deadlock in extra time, so the match went to penalties.

India goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu made a crucial save in the shootout, denying Khaled Hajiah’s shot. Mahesh Naorem then scored the winning penalty for India, giving them the title. This is India’s third SAFF Championship title in the last four years. They are now the most successful team in the history of the tournament, with nine titles.

The match was played in front of a sell-out crowd at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru. The fans were treated to a thrilling contest, and they erupted in celebration when India won the shootout. This is a significant achievement for Indian football. It is a sign that the team is making progress, and it will give them confidence as they prepare for the AFC Asian Cup in 2023.

The SAFF Championship 2023 Final

The final match started with an early lead for Kuwait when Shabaib Alkhaldi tapped the ball into the goal in the 13th minute. However, India responded strongly, and in the 38th minute, Lallianzuala Chhangte scored the equalizer with a powerful shot assisted by Sahal Abdul Samad.

India’s Equalizer

Lallianzuala Chhangte’s goal brought the Indian team back into contention and boosted their confidence. It was a well-executed attacking move, with Ashique Kuruniyan finding Sunil Chhetri, who played a first-time pass to set up Sahal Abdul Samad’s run. Sahal then provided a precise cross for Chhangte to tap the ball into the open net.

India’s Back-to-Back Wins

With this victory, India clinched their ninth SAFF Championship Trophy (title) and made history by winning back-to-back championships under the guidance of head coach Igor Stimac. This achievement highlights India’s growing dominance in the regional football scene.

Tactical Display by Both Teams

The match witnessed a cautious start, with both teams focused on ball retention and building their attacks from the defense. Both India and Kuwait displayed tactical discipline and strategic planning throughout the game.

Gurpreet Singh Sandhu’s Heroics

Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, India’s goalkeeper, proved to be the hero of the night. He made critical saves, including a decisive one in the penalty shootout, securing India’s victory. Gurpreet’s exceptional performance showcased his skill, agility, and ability to handle pressure in high-stakes situations.

Missed Opportunities

Both teams had their share of missed opportunities during regular time and extra time. The match was evenly contested, with moments of excitement and near-misses on both ends of the field. However, it was the resilience and determination of the players that kept the scoreline level until the end.

The harder the struggle, the more glorious the triumph

Extra Time and Defensive Resilience

As neither team could break the deadlock in regular time, the match proceeded to extra time. India team faced a lot of pressure during the early stages of extra time, but their solid strategic and defensive blocks, led by Mahesh Singh and Sandesh Jhingan, prevented any significant threats to Gurpreet’s goal.

The Nerve-Wracking Penalty Shootout

With the match still tied after extra time, it all came down to a tense penalty shootout. captain Sunil Chhetri, Jhingan, Chhangte, and Subhasish successfully converted their penalties for India, while Al-Otaibi, Al-Dhefeery, Mahran, and Al-Khaldi scored for Kuwait. Udanta missed his penalty for India, but Abdullah from Kuwait hit the woodwork, ultimately leading to Gurpreet’s decisive save and India’s victory.

India’s Celebratory Victory

India’s triumph in the 2023 SAFF Championship final sparked widespread celebration among fans and players alike. The team’s dedication, hard work, and unity were instrumental in securing the historic back-to-back championship wins.

SAFF championship

some additional details about the match:

  • India had the better of the chances in the first half, but they were unable to convert them.
  • Kuwait took the lead in the 14th minute when Al Khaldi scored from close range.
  • India equalized in the 39th minute when Chhangte scored a brilliant goal.
  • The match was evenly contested in the second half, but neither team was able to score.
  • The match went to extra time, but neither team was able to break the deadlock.
  • India won the penalty shootout 5-4, with Sandhu saving Hajiah’s shot in the sudden death round.

This is a historic victory for India, and it is a sign that the team is on the right track.

India XI

Team India’s lineup for the final consisted of Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Nikhil Poojary, Sandesh Jhingan, Anwar Ali, Akash Mishra, Jeakson Singh, Anirudh Thapa, Sahal Abdul Samad, Lallianzuala Chhangte, Sunil Chhetri, and Ashique Kuruniyan.

Kuwait XI

Kuwait fielded Abdulrahman Marzouq, Khaled Hajiah, Hasan Alanezi, Abdullah Albloushi, Sultan Alenezi, Ahmad Afnj Aldhefeery, Mohammad Abdullah, Shabaib Alkhaldi, Redha Abujabarah, Hamad Alqallaf, and Mobarak Alfaneeni.


The SAFF Championship 2023 final between India and Kuwait was a thrilling encounter that showcased the true spirit of football. India’s victory, secured through Gurpreet Singh Sandhu’s heroics and the team’s determination, added another chapter to their storied football history. For saff championship 2023 schedule & more Contact…❤️ – Latest football news, scores and other updates at your fingertip❤️


1. How many SAFF Championship titles has India won?
:- India has now won the SAFF Championship a total of nine times, reaffirming their regional dominance.

2. Who scored India’s equalizer in the final?
:- Lallianzuala Chhangte scored the equalizer for India in the 38th minute of the final.

3. Who made the decisive save in the penalty shootout?
:- Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, India’s goalkeeper, made the crucial save in the final penalty shootout, securing the championship win.

4. Who was India’s head coach in the SAFF Championship 2023?
:- Igor Stimac served as India’s head coach in the SAFF Championship 2023 and led the team to back-to-back victories.

5. What was the final score of the SAFF Championship 2023 final?
:- The match ended in a 1-1 draw after regular time and extra time, with India emerging victorious in the penalty shootout with a 5-4 scoreline.

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