Johan and Jordi Cruyff, Alf-Inge and Erling Haaland, Peter and Kasper Schmeichel, Paulo and Daniel Maldini, Mazinho and the Alcantara brothers. European football has seen several father-son duos involved in the sport in some capacity or the other.
Indian football too has seen such duos take the field or work from the sidelines in different or the same eras. We take a look at some of the father-son duos in Indian football.
Jarnail and Jagmohan Singh
Punjab-born Jarnail Singh Dhillon was one of the finest players of his era. The defender who played mostly as a sweeper captained the Blue Tiger from 1965 to 1967. At the club level, he represented Khalsa Sporting Club and Rajasthan Club before spending eight years at Mohun Bagan.
In 1960, Jarnail was part of the national team that competed in the Summer Olympics. Two years later, he became the recipient of the prestigious Arjuna Award. To date, Jarnail remains the only Indian footballer to have captained the Asian All Star Football Team, a feat he achieved in 1966.
One of Jarnail’s two sons, Jagmohan followed his father’s footsteps and became a defender, playing the role of a stopper-back or sweeper, just like his father. In 1989, Jagmohan represented the country in the SAF Games in Lahore, in what was among the rare incidents of a player playing in the same position as his father.
His promising performances in the tournament earned him the plaudits of heavyweights in the industry such as PK Banerjee and Arun Ghosh. Unfortunately, Jagmohan breathed his last in 1996, at the young age of 31.
Jagmohan’s brother Harshmohan was also a promising footballer who represented Punjab University during his playing days. He shifted to Canada and continued to play for local clubs there.
Syed Sabir Pasha and Syed Suhail Pasha
Syed Sabir Pasha is the assistant coach of Indian Super League (ISL) side Chennaiyin FC. The 47-year-old is an India international who spent eight years of his career donning the national colours as a forward. His winning goal against Bangladesh that won India the gold in the 1995 South Asian Games remains the highlight of his career.
His club career saw him remain loyal to Indian Bank, staying at the southern club for 16 years despite East Bengal attempting to land his signature. This is also where Pasha started his coaching career.
After two years each with the Tamil Nadu football team and the AIFF Elite Academy, Pasha became Chennaiyin’s assistant manager in 2016. He has also looked after the youth development at the club.
Pasha’s son Syed Suhail Pasha is an upcoming forward, currently plying his trade for I-League side Chennai City FC. The 20-year-old spent one year with the Chennaiyin U18 side before completing a transfer to Chennai City. He scored one goal and provided two assists in 10 appearances this season.
Santosh Kashyap and Sameer Santosh Kashyap
Santosh Kashyap is one of the few Indians to have obtained an AFC Pro coaching license. As a player, he was known for his prolificacy with the dead ball, donning the colours of the national team and Mahindra United at the club level.
The 53-year-old started his coaching career with Mahindra United's junior teams before taking on the head coach role at Air India in 2010. He went on to manage the likes of Mohun Bagan, ONGC, Rangdajied United, Royal Wahingdoh, Salgaocar, Mumbai FC, Aizawl FC before taking up the role of the coach of Chennaiyin’s reserve team.
Santosh’s son Sameer is a forward in his father’s current team. The 19-year-old represented DSK Shivajians at the U16 level and is currently playing for Chennaiyin’s reserve team in the I-League second division.
Jamshid and Kiyan Nassiri
Iranian forward Jamshid Nassiri enjoyed most of his professional career in West Bengal. The forward donned the kits of Mohammedan and East Bengal, scoring an impressive 83 goals in 122 games.
Jamshid, along with Majid Bishkar, had a huge impact on Indian football with their partnership at East Bengal.
As a coach, he managed Mumbai-based Bengal Mumbai FC for three years between 1998-2001. He later spent one year at the helm of Mohammedan, the club where he enjoyed the best of his playing career.
Jamshid’s son Kiyan Nassiri is a midfielder at Mohun Bagan. He spent his youth career with Mohammedan’s U16 side before signing for the Bengal giants. The 19-year-old mad eone appearance for the 2019-2020 I-League champions and is hopeful of jumping to the first team ahead of the new season.
David and Mason Robertson
David Robertson is a retired Scottish international who represented his national team for two years between 1992-94, playing as a left-back. His playing career saw him play for big clubs such as Aberdeen, Rangers and Leeds United. David retired in 2002 at Scottish club Montrose.
Three years later, the Scot took up the managerial role at Elgin City. After short stints at Montrose and Phoenix FC, David became the manager of the then I-League second-division club Real Kashmir.
He led the side to promotion in his first season and also signed his son Mason Robertson from Peterhead.
Mason started his career at Scottish League One side Stenhousemuir in 2017. The versatile player often functions as a forward and a defender for Real Kashmir and has scored 10 goals in 31 games so far.