Mumbai, December 15: Attacking midfielder Sarpreet Singh became the first player of Indian descent to play in the German Bundesliga while making his debut in FC Bayern Munich's 6-1 thrashing of Werder Bremen on Saturday night.
Sarpreet (20) impressed during pre-season while playing against Real Madrid and Arsenal but had to be content with minutes with the reserve team. He had featured on the FC Bayern bench eight times before making his official debut.
The New Zealand-born arrived at the Allianz Arena from A-League side Wellington Phoenix last summer and could make his official senior-team debut after impressing through the ranks with FC Bayern's reserve side.
Sarpreet's former teammates from Wellington Phoenix include strikers David Williams and Roy Krishna, who now ply their trade at Indian Super League side ATK.
Interestingly, Krishna, the Fijian forward is also of Indian-origin. Sarpreet has previously played on Indian soil when he was part of New Zealand's squad in the 2018 Intercontinental Cup.
He scored his first goal for the All Whites against Kenya at the Mumbai Football Arena before playing against the likes of Sunil Chhetri while facing India.
New Zealand finished second runners-up in the invitational tournament, won by hosts India.
The playmaker got his first taste of senior football as a substitute in an A-League game in February 2017 against Melbourne City, sister club of ISL side Mumbai City FC. He made 39 league appearances for Phoenix before making the big-ticket move to the Bundesliga with former European champions FC Bayern.
FC Bayern are fourth on the Bundesliga table with 27 points, six points behind leaders RB Leipzig.
The Bavarian giants have also made it to the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 by topping their group under interim head coach Hansi Flick, who was appointed after the departure of Niko Kovac midway through the season last month.