EINTRACHT FRANKFURT captain David Abraham ended his Bundesliga career in bizarre fashion – as he swapped shirts with the referee.
Abraham, 34, is leaving the German side after five-and-a-half years to go back to Argentina and be with his family.
David Abraham, centre, and referee Manuel Grafe exchanged shirts after full-time on Sunday[/caption]
He was given an emotional ‘sending off’ by Eintracht as they beat Schalke 3-1 on Sunday.
But no one quite expected referee Manuel Grafe to go home with Abraham’s final matchday shirt.
The defender shared a laugh with the match officials after the full-time whistle.
And while they were talking, Abraham and Grafe took off their jerseys and handed them over to each other before shaking hands and embracing – thankfully there was no yellow card.
Popular Abraham was given a wonderful send off on social media as fans reacted to the shirt swap.
One said: “What a legend, what a character. Been a class-act for this club from day one. Received the highest praise from team-mates and even the opponents.”
Another wrote: “Beautiful moment of mutual respect. Don’t you just love football made in Germany.”
Abraham left Argentina to have spells in Spain and Switzerland before moving to the Bundesliga in 2013 with Hoffenheim.
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Two years later he signed for Frankfurt and has become a club legend, winning the DFB-Pokal in 2018 – the German equivalent of the FA Cup.
Speaking about returning to Argentina to play for hometown outfit Huracan de Chabas, the former Under-20 international – who played with Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero – said: “Because of coronavirus, I decided to stick around for another six months to help Eintracht Frankfurt, the club that has given me so much.
“No, certainly not [an easy decision], but it’s worth it for my son Alfonso!
“I want to go back home now and play in the amateur league for the club where it all started and where I discovered my love for football, namely Huracan de Chabas – it’s the equivalent of the ninth or tenth tier in Germany.
“I left my hometown when I was a teenager.
“I’ve been a father for four and a half years and I’ve seen my son very little, especially since the pandemic started.
“Nothing can replace this time of watching your son grow up.”
Abraham was given a hero’s sendoff by his team-mates[/caption]