Maldivian football star, Ali Ashfaq’s hat trick secured a clear win for PDRM FA, who beat local favorites Maziya by 5-4, to lift the People’s Cup.
The close contest ended with PDRM completing the tournament, with no losses.
Wednesday night’s match began with PDRM FA taking a clear lead 3-0, when Maziya’s coach Ali Suzeyn’s numerous changes paid off, with the team managing to draw the score, and extend the match to additional time.
The two goals that put PDRM FA back on the lead were scored by Dramane Traore and local golden boy Ali Ashfaqm during the additional 30 minutes.
The match, played in front of approximately 8000 spectators, tested Maziya’s strength when defender Mohamed Saif was sent packing with a red card, for a foul on PDRM’s Ashfaq.
PDRM took an early lead with top scorer of the tournament, Dramane Traore’s goal in the first half, which was followed by Ali Ashfaq’s goal. Ashfaq completed the only hat trick of the tournament by scoring two more goals in the second half.
After PDRM secured a 3-0 lead, Maziya upped their game with goals by Mohamed Irfan, Asadhulla Abdulla and Ahmed Izam.
However, when the referee’s decision resulted in Maziya having to play sans one man, PDRM had already taken the lead. However, Maziya’s Spanish forward Pablo Rodriguez narrowed the difference to one goal.
Maziya’s goal keeper, who is also the goal keeper of the Maldivian national team Imran Mohamed was selected the best goal keeper of the tournament.
PDRM FA’s Dramane Traore was selected the man of the tournament.
After the match, Football Association of Maldives honored Ashfaq’s performance in Malaysia’s league last year by giving him a plaque.
The trophy and medals were awarded to the Champion team by Tourism Minister Ahmed Adeeb.