Kolkata, Feb 27 (IANS) Not winning the I-League and playing insufficient matches for India are the two regrets veteran midfielder Mehtab Hossain has as he announced on Wednesday that he will retire from club football after this season.
Mehtab, who plays for Mohun Bagan after plying his trade for arch-rivals East Bengal for almost a decade, announced his decision on the eve of their match against Indian Arrows.
“Football has always been my passion. Whatever I am today is because of football. I don’t want to warm the benches, the time has come for me to announce the decision,” the 36-year-old told reporters.
“Not winning the I-League will be the biggest regret and I wish I could have played more matches for the national team,” Mehtab said.
Mehtab donned the East Bengal jersey from 2007-2016 when he was in top form and in 2015, he called it quits from international football after he was dropped from the 26-man squad for the World Cup qualifiers.
Mehtab represented Kerala Blasters in the Indian Super League (ISL) for the first three seasons before playing for Jamshedpur FC during the last season.
“Whatever popularity and fame I have received, it is because of my fans. I thank my coaches and officials for giving me the opportunity.”
“I would also like to thank all my friends from the media fraternity as well. I thank all the football fans of Bengal those who have stayed beside me through thick and thin,” Mehtab said, adding that he’s looking forward to spending more time with his family.