7 of Indian Football Team's Best Results in Recent Years

The Indian national football team came up with an unbelievable performance as they held World Cup 2022 hosts Qatar to a draw in their own backyard on Tuesday.

Indian football fans celebrated this result in huge numbers as it definitely is one of, if not the best result for the Indian national team in recent years.

In the past too, the Indian football team has come up with gritty performances. Here's a look at seven of the Blue Tigers' best results over the years....

Note: Only those performances considered in which India played against better opponents.

7. Puerto Rico (Home)

India turned around a one goal deficit and beat higher ranked Puerto Rico 4-1 in a FIFA international friendly in Mumbai on September 3, 2016.

The Blue Tigers were down 0-1 in the seventh minute after Emmanuel Sanchez scored off a penalty, but the hosts went on to dominate and win the game against Puerto Rico, who were then ranked 38 places above them.

Narayan Das (18th minute), Sunil Chhetri (26th), Jeje Lalpekhlua (34th) and Jackichand Singh (58th) scored on the night.

The visitor’s however, had key attackers Jorge Rivera, Joseph Marrero and all-time leading goalscorer Hector Ramos missing on their trip to India.

6. Turkmenistan (Home)

India took on Turkmenistan at the then known Gachibowli Stadium in Hyderabad as part of their AFC Challenge Cup Group A.

The Blue Tigers caused a major upset as they ran out 2-1 winners over the central-Asian side. India needed a win against Turkmenistan in the last group game to qualify for the semis and they did just that thanks to a brace from skipper Bhaichung Bhutia.

5. UAE (Home)

In the 2002 World Cup Qualification's group stage, India were drawn with UAE, Brunei and Yemen. 

The Blue Tigers went on and played one of their best games in recent history against UAE at home. 

The Emirati side were one of the best teams in Asia at that time and when the groups stage draws were announced, it was expected that they would win all games.

In 2001, they visited Bangalore to play their away leg of the tie against India and were stunned by a 40,000 plus crowd.

Jules Alberto scored the only goal of that game, following which India defended with their lives to hold on for a 1-0 win. One could say that this game ushered in the modern era in Indian football.

4. Thailand (Away)

In what was one of the best performances by India away from home, in the AFC Asian Cup at the beginning of this year, India shocked the South Asian community by convincingly beating Thailand in UAE.

Goals from Jeje, Anirudh Thapa and a brace from none other than Sunil Chhetri ensured India won by a thumping scoreline of 4-1 on the night.

3. China (Away)

India traveled to China to play against their national team, managed by legendary Italian coach Marcello Lippi in October last year as part of their warm-up match to the then upcoming AFC Asian Cup in January 2019.

The Blue Tigers showed immense grit and determination to keep out the Red Dragons for the entirety of the game and at the same time came up with some interesting counter-attacks throughout the 90 minutes of the 0-0 draw.

2. Oman (Away)

India played Oman on December 27 last year in a friendly match that was played behind closed doors as part of their AFC Asian Cup warm-up match in which the Blue Tigers managed a 0-0 draw.

Both teams managed to throw punches at each other but their defenses held resolute on the day as India came away with a well earned draw to boost their confidence for the Asian Cup in January.

Additionally, India have now lost to Oman at home twice, in the 2018 and 2022 World Cup qualifiers respectively and should have won both the games if they did not miss their chances.

1. Qatar (Away)

Possibly one of India's greatest results in recent times, Igor Stimac's Blue Tigers visited Doha to take on the Qatari national team in their own backyard as part of their FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign.

Qatar, who are the hosts of the 2022 World Cup were left frustrated with India's brilliant performance in the defensive and goalkeeping section, courtesy of Gurpreet Singh Sandhu.

The fact that India managed to get something out of this match in the absence of their talisman Sunil Chhetri will give every Indian hope of better results in their future World Cup qualifying games.