Mizoram is the state in India’s North-Eastern region that has contributed the most to Indian football after Manipur. The growth of football in the state occurred in the new millennium, and Mizoram has developed some top-tier talent in the last 20 years. This article focuses on some of the great Indian footballers who have come from Mizoram.
#1 Shylo Malsawmtluanga
Shylo Malsawmtluanga is a Mizo football pioneer. He is a football trailblazer in his province, having been the first Mizoram player to play for the two Kolkata giants, Mohun Bagan, and East Bengal.
Malsawmtluanga’s professional success has influenced generations of Mizo players, and almost every single player from that state has looked up to the winger since, including Indian international players like Jeje Lalpekhlua and Lallianzuala Chhangte.
Tluanga, or Mama as he was affectionately known, has played for the Indian national team for many years and the Delhi Dynamos in the first two seasons of the Indian Super League (ISL).
#2 Jerry Zirsanga
Jerry Zirsanga is now the youngest Indian footballer to score an international goal. During Stephen Constantine’s first spell as India coach, the Mizo footballer scored a goal against Kuwait at the age of 16 years and 311 days.
Zirsanga had previously worked with Mohun Bagan, Churchill Brothers, and Dempo SC.
#3 Jeje Lalpekhlua
Jeje Lalpekhlua is widely regarded as the best Indian striker to have emerged from Mizoram. The India international striker has won every single trophy in Indian football while playing for some of the country’s top teams, including Dempo SC, Mohun Bagan, and Chennaiyin FC.
With 24 goals in 76 matches, Lalpekhlua is the second-highest Indian goal scorer in ISL history and the seventh-highest overall. Just Sunil Chhetri is higher on the list of the most prolific Indian goal scorers.
The 30-year-old forward made his senior international debut in 2010 and has scored 21 goals in 56 appearances since then.
#4 Lalrindika Ralte
Lalrindika Ralte, one of Mizoram’s best stars, spent the bulk of his career with Kolkata giants East Bengal. Until joining the Red and Golds, he made his professional debut with Churchill Brothers.
He was so well-liked at East Bengal that he was elected club captain. Didika was a crucial player for Trevor Morgan’s team as they won the AFC Cup semifinals in 2013. He has played for Mumbai City FC, ATK, and NorthEast United FC in the ISL.
Didika, as he is affectionately called, made his senior international debut in 2010, and the 28-year-old midfielder has played in 14 international games in his career.
#5 Lallianzuala Chhangte
The 23-year-old India international winger is regarded as one of the best players from Mizoram. The youth is now playing for Chennaiyin FC in the Indian Super League (ISL).
He made his international debut in 2015. Becoming the third-youngest Indian goal scorer at the time when he netted his first international goal against Nepal in the SAFF Championship. He has achieved this at the age of 18 years and 140 days. Narender Gahlot shattered his record after four years in 2019.
Lallianzuala Chhangte is also the third-highest Indian goal scorer in ISL history. He has scored 19 goals in 78 matches, behind only Sunil Chhetri and Jeje Lalpekhlua.