Indian Football

From Narsingh to Taylor: 5 top players who could be eligible to play for India in the future

Arjun Singh Devgan
Luciano Narsingh is of Indian origin
Luciano Narsingh is of Indian origin / Mark Evans/GettyImages
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There are a number of Indian descent based players who play in foreign leagues and are yet to represent the country as they are born abroad and are yet to get clearance from the government to represent them as India do not allow dual citizenships.

Only footballers who hold an Indian passport are permitted to represent the country in international games as per the current rule which was formed by the Sports Ministry in 2008. So far, only one player of foreign descent has featured for the Blue Tigers after midfielder Arata Izumi surrendered his Japanese passport to obtain an Indian citizenship in 2012.

Here, we take a look at those top players who could represent India in the future if the government does decide to change the rules.

1. Neil Taylor

Neil Taylor
Middlesbrough v Fulham - Sky Bet Championship / Stu Forster/GettyImages

Neil Taylor is arguably the most well known player on this list considering that he has played for the likes of Aston Villa and Middlesbrough - while making a name for himself at Swansea City.

The left-back who played for Wales between 2010 to 2019 and was recently linked with a move to the Indian Super League (ISL), qualifies for India as his mother hails from Kolkata.

2. Danny Batth

Danny Batth
Stoke City v Wolverhampton Wanderers - Pre-Season Friendly / James Gill - Danehouse/GettyImages

Danny Batth is another name on the list who would be familiar to Indian audiences considering that he spent 10 years with Wolves, between 2010 to 2019.

In 2017, Batth had made his intention clear to play for the Indian team and even met then head coach, Stephen Constantine on the sidelines of a Fifa World Cup Qualifier camp in Mumbai - but nothing came out of it.

3. Harmeet Singh

Harmeet Singh
Kalmar FF v IFK Goteborg - Allsvenskan / Jonas Gustafsson/GettyImages

Harmeet Singh was born in Osla, Norway but is Indian as his parents belong to Ludhiana with the defensive midfielder also making five appearances for the senior Norway side.
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His ability to control the pace of the game and his sublime ball-playing skills earned the central midfielder the moniker as the ‘Norwegian Iniesta’ by European media outlets after catching the eye of Pep Guardiola in 2010.

The 31-year-old for his part has expressed an interest in representing the Blue Tigers in the past.

4. Luciano Narsingh

Luciano Narsingh
A-League Mens - Central Coast Mariners v Sydney FC / Mark Evans/GettyImages

Another big name on the list is Luciano Narsingh with the winger playing for the likes of Swansea City and Feyenoord in the past while also making 16 appearances for Netherlands so far.

He has Indian roots as his grandparents were immigrant workers from Andhra Pradesh before moving to Suriname, a former Dutch colony where they worked in plantations.

5. Sarpreet Singh

Sarpeet Singh
SSV Jahn Regensburg v FC St. Pauli - Second Bundesliga / Alexander Hassenstein/GettyImages

Sarpreet Singh caught the eye of the whole world when he became the first Indian origin player to play in the Bundesliga, making his debut for Bayern Munich as a substitute. The 21-year-old’s has drawn comparisons with Mesut Ozil for his varied range of passing.

The midfielder only made two appearances for Bayern, but would be a great addition to India's squad.

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