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263. Syed Sabir Pasha

Syed Sabir Pasha, Former India football player. Photo: S. Thanthoni

Former Indian football player

Syed Sabir Pasha Represented Indian football team in the early 90's. He also played cum coched Indian Bank-chennai
Pasha is an international football PLAYER FROM Tamil Nadu, India.
  • Represented India (1993–2001)
  • Represented Tamil Nadu state (1994–2006)
  • Represented Indian bank (1991–2007)
  • Coach - India Youth teams (2006–2008)
  • Currently - Coach of Indian Bank football team
Sabir was one of the very few Tamil Nadu footballers to make a mark at the international level. He started as a starlet playing for the I.C.F Institute Football club and went on to be an outstanding player for Indian football team. Playing along with some of the best footballers India has ever produced like IM Vijayan, VP Sathyan, Baichung Bhutia, Jo Paul Ancheri, etc., in his heyday he was rated as one of the best wingers the country has ever produced.
A born sportsman, Sabir excelled in both cricket and football. He represented the state U-15 and U-17 teams in Cricket, before choosing to pursue football. He has captained the Tamil Nadu State team on three occasions and was the highest goal scorer at the Santosh Trophy in 1996 and 1998. His performance was one of the reasons for Indian Bank football club to feature in the National football league for a couple of seasons.

Family history

Born in a middle-class football-loving family, Sabir's father Syed Siddiq Pasha was the main driving force behind his successful career. A footballer himself, Siddiq was the main inspiration behind Pasha to choose a career in soccer over cricket. Siddiq's brother Syed Raheem Pasha, commonly known as Peer was a renowned footballer of yesteryear, who played for Tamil Nadu state and ICF football teams.
Sabir's elder brother Syed Sadiq Pasha too is an excellent cricketer and footballer. In their school days in ICF Silver Jubilee both brothers used to play against each other as captains of rival teams. Healthy competition between the two helped enhance their skills in Football and cricket. Both Pasha brothers were born athletes which was evident when both ended up dominating in all the sports events in the school. Under the able guidance of their father and uncle, the Pasha brothers inherited their craft & guile and excelled in football from school days. Sadiq was a defender unlike Sabir (a Winger) and was more into Cricket. Sadiq tookup a job with Customs&Central excise, and played as an outstanding defender for their football team. He also played cricket with some of the top teams in Chennai Cricket League. Apart from their other commitments, the brothers currently run a Sports goods shop at Chennai.

 Early success

Sabir made a mark during the Youth tournament at Coimbatore in the late 80s as a teenager. Playing against the starlets of the footballing Giants of India like East Bengal, Mohun Bagan, Mohammedan Sporting, etc., Sabir was among the brightest stars of the tournament getting a bag full of goals. He soon joined the Dynamos football club from chennai and his excellent performances, speed and craft won him a lot of fans and admirers. He took a job with Indian Bank, Chennai in 1991 and started playing for Indian bank football team in the Chennai Senior Division football league.

 Career highlights

It was not a long time before Sabir's talent was spotted. He was one of the few players who was directly selected to play for India before representing the state football team. At a very early age he was selected among the probables for the Indian football team in 1993. Sabir got an opportunity to play for India for the first time at the Jawaharlal Nehru Gold Cup in Chennai. He injured himself during practice at the start of the tournament and could not make a real impression on his debut. He became a regular member of the Indian football team since then. The foreign football coach of Indian Football team at that time, Mr. Akramov rated him on par with IM Vijayan as one of the brightest footballing talents playing for India at that time. His representation for India Promoted him to the rank of an Asst Manager with Indian Bank.
Sabir shot to fame in 1995. His diving header goal against Bangladesh won India the gold in the SAF Games final. He became a regular member for the Indian football team and went on to score vital goals at International venues. He score some memorable goals playing for India at the World cup qualifiers held at Qatar.
Sabir made his debut for Tamil Nadu State team in 1994, a year after making his debut for India. He captained the Tamil Nadu state team on three occasions. He was the highest goal-scorer at the Santosh Trophy Championship in 1996 and 1999. Santosh trophy is regarded as one of the premier trophies at national level.
An inspirational Sabir was one of the reasons for a relatively unknown Indian Bank football team to play in the elite National football league, against the best football clubs in the country. He received a lot of offers from Big clubs from Kolkatta. But Sabir preferred the job security as Assistant Manager atIndian Bank
The Present
Sabir Pasha hung up his boots in 2007. He made a smooth and successful transition as a Football coach by doing International C license from Japan. He took over the responsibility of Indian Bank football team and then went on to coach the Indian U-16 team. Man with a keen eye for talent, Pasha was the spotter for AIFF at the U-14 football festival in Chandigarh and Kolkatta. After a Successful stint as a Commentator on Zee Sports, Pasha has greener pastures to look forward to besides Legacy

Sabir Pasha's kids Sohail and Jabir are following the footsteps of their father. Since a very early age, the kids are trained by grandpa Siddiq pasha. With useful guidance and expertise from father, Sohail and Jabir are already showing signs of days to come. They have started making headlines by their performances at school level. Not long before we see another Pasha donning the headlines of Indian sports newspapers and creating fear in the hearts of Central defenders!

Source : Wikipedia


  1. Syed Sabir Pasha was my younger brother Ravi's classmate at ICF Nursery School. I had seen Sabir as a small kid (I am four years older to him) when he was just in Senior Nursery (UKG) and first standard. I remember an extremely pleasant, always smiling and cheerful little child in front of my eyes - I cannot (and would not want to) remember Sabir any other way. My brother Ravi was an excellent runner and so was Sabir. Sadiq (3 years younger to me), was a bit more serious. I am so happy both these brothers, and especially Sabir, has done us all proud. Very recently and accidently, I came across Sabir's father, who runs a sports shop at ICF Shopping complex. We are all proud of you, Sabir.

    Dr. M. Sathya Prasad & my younger brother and your former classmate M. Ravi

  2. True legend, need to note, these achievements were made when sports infrastructure were not so good in our country, nor sports was believed to give a livelihood to one. Great, hats off to the legend and really proud of him.