Art And Culture

Nekounam Auctions Team Melli Jersey

Nekounam Auctions Team Melli JerseyNekounam Auctions Team Melli Jersey

Former Iran national soccer team captain Javad Nekounam put up his jersey No. 6 which he wore at World Cup 2014 for a charity auction at Eivan-e-Shams Hall in Tehran on Monday.

The popular footballer’s jersey, signed by Team Melli players, was put up for auction to benefit orphan students in school and university and students with negligent parents, covered by the charity Mo’oud-e-Iranian  Institute, reported.

Nekounam, 31, who currently plays for Saipa F.C. as a central midfielder, said the charity was introduced to him by Saipa’s head coach Majid Jalali, who also attended the event.

“I am here to auction my jersey No. 6 for charity,” Nekounam said. The jersey will not be given to anyone in exchange for the money, and it was a symbolic gesture to raise funds for the needy. It will be auctioned again at the end of the year so that more philanthropists could donate to the institute.

The shirt will finally be presented to Astan Quds Razavi, a charitable foundation which manages the Imam Reza (AS) Shrine, of the eighth Shia imam in Mashhad, Khorasan Razavi Province.

In the ceremony, where many artists and athletes took part, Nekounam symbolically presented his jersey to veteran actor Jamshid Mashayekhi.

The first bid came by a person who donated 250 sq. m of land in Mashhad to the charity. It was followed by cash contributions totaling $3500.

Former soccer players Nima Nakisa and Behnam Abolqasempour, actors Hassan Pourshirazi, Roya Teymourian and Majid Yaser, film director Mohamad-Hossein Latifi and writer Ali Masoudi were among the guests.

Widely regarded as one of Iran’s greatest footballers, Nekounam spent most of his professional career with Pas and Esteghlal football clubs in Iran and Spain’s Osasuna. He represented the national team 151 times and was the most capped player after surpassing the legendary Ali Daei.

He played several major tournaments including two World Cups and four Asian Cups. In March 2015, he played his last national match in a friendly against Sweden.

Mo’oud-e-Iranian Institute helps with education of orphan students or those with negligent parents so that they have a proper vocation in future. It also helps prevent child labor by paying for their higher education.