K. Male' | Aishath Shaany | 31-December-2018 | Monday 12:22 | Shaaknee | Sport | 2,298
Imran 'Imma' Mohamed, Maldives' most celebrated goalkeeper, has retired from international football after 17 years.
A special charity match was held on Sunday night, to mark Imran's retirement, with parts of the funds raised is to be donated to an organization of Imran's choice. He had chosen the Blind and Visually Impaired Society of Maldives.
The two teams that played in the match are 'IMMA XI' and 'FA XI,' with Real Madrid and Spain defender, Michel Salgado and former Manchester United and 'world's best' goalkeeper Michael Schmeichel joining the latter team; however, Schmeichel was unable to play due to an injury. Imran's team comprised of a number of players that had contributed to his long career in football.
IMMA XI won the special match, with four goals to three.
While President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih attended the match, Imran presented him with a glove from the set he used when Maldives won the SAFF Championship in 2008. The other one was given to the Football Association of Maldives (FAM), and was accepted by its president Bassam Adeel Jaleel.
Imran also presented special jerseys to Salgado and Schmeichel.
He also took the opportunity to say a few words while on stage with his family, and credited them for his success.
Imran, who had made the decision to retire in 2016, said that the main purpose of this 'is to provide opportunities to newcomers.' He has been the first-choice national goal keeper since 2000.
In his 17-year career, Imran has represented the country in 111 matches.
The 38-year-old will continue to play the sport locally. While he is yet to announce a club, Imran has said that he will be playing for one in the next football season.
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