If You’ve Never Seen A Game-Winning Rabona Before, Now’s Your Chance
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If I asked you to name the current leading scorer in Euro 2020 qualifying, who would you go with? Harry Kane? Cristiano Ronaldo? Kane is joint-second with six goals and Ronaldo has five to his name, so those aren’t bad guesses, but it's actually Israel’s Eran Zahavi.
The 32-year-old Zahavi isn’t exactly a household name — at least outside of Israel and China. The only time he's spent playing outside those two countries was a brief spell with Palermo, where he scored only two goals in 23 Serie A appearances.
But his subsequent play for Maccabi Tel Aviv in the Israeli Premier League saw him earn a big-money move to the CSL's Guangzhou R&F back in the summer of 2016. Zahavi has been a huge success there, and that’s mirrored in his paycheck: He initially signed a two-and-a-half year deal worth a total of $12.5 million, but he’s now in the midst of a three-year contract that’ll pay him a total of $30 million.
Is he worth it? On Saturday he scored both goals in a 2-1 victory over Tianjin Quanjian. The second was a game-winner in the 90th minute . . . and it was a rabona.
Last minute rabona winner in China pic.twitter.com/oZQEKz6iKm— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) September 14, 2019
It’s beautiful, but it’s also going to invite that sort of person you never, ever want to encounter at a party: “wHy Do ThAt? hIs LeFt fOoT mUsT bE tErRibLe!”
Here’s his left foot in action in those aforementioned Euro 2020 qualifiers. It's decent.
Eran Zahavi in #EURO2020 qualifying:
— UEFA EURO 2020 (@UEFAEURO) September 5, 2019
Eran Zahavi is the game’s most known unknown.