Bengaluru FC custodian Gurpreet Singh Sandhu has has been an integral part of the team since joining them in 2017. Over his seven-year tenure, the Punjab-born player has solidified his status as one of the country's premier goalkeepers.

In the Indian Super League (ISL), Sandhu has achieved notable success, amassing 132 appearances for the club. His impressive record includes 42 clean sheets and over 360 saves.

Sandhu played a pivotal role in Bengaluru FC's ISL Cup triumph during the 2018-19 season. Although the team couldn't replicate this success in the subsequent season despite reaching the playoffs, Sandhu's contributions were crucial in securing a spot in the semi-finals. Notably, he clinched the Golden Glove award for a second consecutive season, becoming the first keeper in the league to do so.

However, Bengaluru FC faced a challenging phase afterward, missing out on playoff berths in the next two seasons. The turning point came in the ISL 2022-23 season when they reached the final after a remarkable turaround, but narrowly lost to Mohun Bagan Super Giant in a penalty shootout.

As of now, Bengaluru FC occupies the 10th position on the table after 16 games, trailing by two points for the sixth spot. Despite a tough start to the season, the team will eager to secure positive results and position themselves for a playoff spot under new head coach Gerard Zaragoza.

Despite recent struggles and the need to grind out victories, Sandhu remains optimistic about the club's potential to return to playing attractive football and securing wins.

“Bengaluru FC wasn’t always like this and Eric (Paartalu) was there to witness it as well. We were the team everyone was scared of. And we played good football, and everyone enjoyed it. Be it home or away. But of course, things have changed, times have changed and we are in a kind of a situation where we have to grind out results. It is something that we have to live by right now. But it's nothing permanent,” stated Sandhu while speaking to Erik Paartalu and Pulasta Dhar on the Off The Pitch podcast. 

Following a challenging beginning to the season, Bengaluru FC took a strategic step by appointing Gerard Zaragoza in December 2023 to succeed former head coach Simon Grayson. Under the guidance of the Spanish head coach, notable signings such as Chinglensana Singh, Oliver Drost, and Nikhil Poojary have been made.

Zaragoza has emphasised his aspiration for an entertaining style of football that resonates with the fans. This shift in approach has been evident through the team's increased focus on ball possession and an attacking mindset.

Ensuring that the team is on the right track towards playing such beautiful football, Sandhu stated, "I promise, things will get better. It will be something that you would love to watch again and again. I am sure if not this season then next season definitely because we are seeing some spark, glimpses of team camaraderie in terms of how we want to play, some moments in the game when some movements click and we are almost close enough to score and its something that we are enjoying on the pitch. It's just a matter of time when it starts happening organically after we spend a lot of time together."

Sandhu boasts considerable experience at both club and international levels. Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, currently in what he considers the prime of his career, envisions immersing himself in a job that he is passionate about when he decides to hang up his boots.

Sandhu expressed: “I need to make sure that I end up playing longer because I want the comfort after playing. I don't want to work for just work after football. I just want to work because I want to enjoy with my friends on a podcast (or maybe something similar). That’s a stage I want to reach. The sooner I get to that stage is better. But I just want to enjoy this moment with football because everyone says the age from 31 to 37, whatever, is the good age for keepers to excel and hopefully I just prove them right.”

The India international goalkeeper has conceded 149 goals in the ISL to date. When discussing about the most challenging opponents he has faced in the league, Sandhu highlighted the difficulty of facing former Hyderabad FC striker Bartholomew Ogbeche, emphasising his formidable nature. “There were players who I think are not in the ISL anymore, or they are playing elsewhere. But I feel like players like Ogbeche always used to punish us, punish me especially, for not playing well,” he revealed.  

Among the current ISL players, Punjab FC forward Luka Majcen has succeeded in getting inside the head of Sandhu. The Slovenian has scored in both of their fixtures against Bengaluru FC. 

“Right now, the striker from Punjab FC (Luka Majcen) is my nemesis. Not nemesis, but he is someone who is frustrating because he is getting those goals when it’s not possible to score and he is getting those goals somehow. Like it's kind of out of my control, and when it’s not in my control that’s when I get frustrated. I don’t get frustrated otherwise,” he revealed. 

Sandhu also named Kerala Blasters FC midfielder Adrian Luna as one of the players who is hard to face. The Uruguayan managed to find the back of the net against the Blues in the opening fixture of the ISL 2023-24 season.   

“And of course, I think in Kerala Blasters FC, Luna. I love the player but he’s someone that is always there poking you again and again with these dangerous balls,” Sandhu said.