6 stats of the SAFF Championship that you must know

India will face Kuwait in the Final of the SAFF Championship 2023 on July 4th but before that, let's have a look at the six stats we must know.
The stats, you must know about before the huge final (Image - Goal.com)
The stats, you must know about before the huge final (Image - Goal.com)

SAFF Championship is the prime international football competition of the South Asian Football Federation (SAFF). The teams which are governed by the SAFF, can only participate in this prestigious competition. The prestigious competition kicked off in Lahore in 1993. It is held every two years. The 2021 edition of the tournament was postponed twice to October 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. India are the team with the most number of titles (8) in the history of this competition. The blue tigers are once again in the final in the 2023 edition to defend their 2021 title. Kuwait and Lebanon are the newcomers in this edition. Surprisingly, Kuwait are in the final which will be played on July 4th at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium, Bengaluru. Before that, we'll have a look at the six interesting stats we must know about.

Most Goals in the history of the SAFF Championship:

Ali Ashfaq (Maldives) was the player with the most number of goals in this competition. Sunil Chhetri equaled his tally after scoring 5 goals in the 2023 edition. He can get past him if he scores a goal in the final against Kuwait.

RankNationPlayerGoals scored
1MaldivesAli Ashfaq23
IndiaSunil Chhetri
3IndiaBhaichung Bhutia12
4MaldivesIbrahim Fazeel10
MaldivesAhmed Thariq

Top Goal scorers in every single edition:

The Blue tigers' skipper Sunil Chhetri is the only player to win the SAFF Championship Golden Boot more than 2 times. Everyone has the confirmation of Chhetri's Golden Boot win in the 2023 edition as well.

1993 I. M. Vijayan3
1995 Mohamed Amanulla3
1997 I. M. Vijayan6
1999 Naresh Joshi3
 Bhaichung Bhutia
 Mizanur Rahman Dawn
 Mohamed Wildhan
2003 Sarfraz Rasool4
2005 Ibrahim Fazeel3
 Ali Ashfaq
 Ahmed Thariq
2008 Harez Habib4
2009 Enamul Haque4
 Ahmed Thariq
 Channa Ediri Bandanage
2011 Sunil Chhetri7
2013 Ali Ashfaq10
2015 Khaibar Amani4
2018 Manvir Singh3
2021 Sunil Chhetri5
2023Sunil Chhetri5

Performance by the nations in every single edition:

India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, and Pakistan were the four teams that participated in the first edition of the SAFF Championship held in Lahore, Pakistan in 1993. At first, The competition was named the South Asian Association for Regional Co-operation Gold Cup. In 2008, the name changed to the current one. India became the first-ever South Asian football champions after clinching the inaugural SAFF Championship in 1993.

India8 (1993, 1997, 1999, 2005, 2009, 2011, 2015, 2021)4 (1995, 2008, 2013, 2018)
Maldives2 (2008, 2018)3 (1997, 2003, 2009)4 (2005, 2011, 2013, 2015)
Bangladesh1 (2003)2 (1999, 2005)3 (1995, 2009, 2023)
Afghanistan1 (2013)2 (2011, 2015)
Sri Lanka1 (1995)1 (1993)3 (2008, 2009, 2015)
Nepal1 (2021)3 (2011, 2013, 2018)
Pakistan2 (2005, 2018)
Bhutan1 (2008)
Lebanon1 (2023)

The Winning Coaches of the Nations (1993-2021):

Syed Nayeemuddin and Sukhwinder Singh are the only coaches to win the title more than one time. The present Indian national team coach, Igor Stimac has the opportunity to equal the tally with both of them.

1993India Jiri Pesek
1995Sri Lanka Jorge Perreira
1997India Syed Nayeemuddin
1999India Sukhwinder Singh
2003Bangladesh George Kottan
2005India Syed Nayeemuddin
2008Maldives Jozef Jankech
2009India Sukhwinder Singh
2011India Savio Medeira
2013Afghanistan Mohammad Yousef Kargar
2015India Stephen Constantine
2018Maldives Petar Segrt
2021India Igor Štimac

All-time points table:

The countries that played in the 2023 edition are Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Lebanon, and Kuwait. Lebanon and Bangladesh kicked out by Kuwait and India in the Semi-Finals. Both teams will play against each other for the prestigious trophy. The Blue Tigers have a chance to extend the number if they defeat strong Kuwait in the Final.

5Sri Lanka1341137214865−1746

SAFF Championship winners list (1993-2021):

Maldives are the most successful national team after India with 2 titles. Bangladesh, Afghanistan (not a member of SAFF anymore), and Sri Lanka are the teams with 1 title each. Unfortunately, Sri Lanka received a suspension from the governing body of world football, FIFA. The ban makes Sri Lanka unable to neither host nor participate in the 2023 SAFF Championship.

1993PakistanIndia Sri Lanka
1995Sri LankaSri LankaIndia
2008Maldives and Sri LankaMaldivesIndia

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