Footballer Sahal Abdul Samad has heaped praise on Sunil Chhetri, saying the talismanic India captain is the "best in India" and that "he wants to be the best every single day".
Sahal Abdul Samad on Chhetri's positive mindset
"If I have to choose one thing about him, it will be Chhetri bhai's positive mindset -- to be the best every day. That's the one point I would love to adopt from him. Everybody knows he's the best in India, but he still wants to be the best every single day," Sahal stated in a live chat with AIFF TV on Wednesday.
"From that day I understood what kind of person he is. Afterwards, when I got selected into the final squad for the first time together, we played together and I gained more experience from him. He loves giving advice to young players all the time. That's a really good thing about him," he added.
The 23-year-old midfielder, who was named the AIFF Emerging Men's Player of the Year 2018-19 last year, took his senior team bow against Curacao in the King's Cup 2019 and since then, he has gone on to become a key figure in the Indian midfield.
"Chhetri-bhai always sits with young players. I remember once he stopped me, Thapa (Anirudh), Amarjit (Singh Kiyam) and Kamaljit (Singh) and he gave us special advice on how to become a professional player. Nobody else had ever told me these things with such clarity," he said.
"He spoke about putting hard work and practice first, and the importance of rest and nutrition. He made sure we got all of that in our mind too. I won't forget that meeting ever, and it was really special learning from him," Sahal added.