Soccer Stars Sign Big

By Ben Ehrlich

Published July 25, 2007, issue of July 27, 2007.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Galaxy superstar David Beckham wasn’t the only one to don a new jersey in Los Angeles last Saturday; Israeli defenseman Tal Ben Haim started one of his first games for the opposing club, Chelsea, before being substituted out of the exhibition match at the end of the first half. In one of the highlights of Chelsea’s 1-0 victory, 25-year-old Ben Haim set up teammate Ricardo Carvalho with a beautiful give-and-go for a near goal that rocketed off the outside of the net.

Chelsea, an English Premiership club owned by Russian Jewish oil billionaire Roman Abramovich, acquired Ben Haim from the Bolton Wanderers on June 14 for four years. Ben Haim, whom manager José Mourinho had been trying to land since January, will help the club defend its FA Cup and League Cup championships. He also will try to help Chelsea win the Champion’s League, club soccer’s top prize. Last season, bitter rival Liverpool defeated Chelsea in the semifinals before bowing out to champion A.C. Milan.

Not to be outdone, Liverpool has also signed its own Israeli star. Earlier this month, it acquired 27-year-old midfielder Yossi Benayoun from West Ham United for four years for $10.3 million. The playmaker recorded four goals and three assists last year for West Ham in Premier League play.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Could Spider-Man be Jewish? Andrew Garfield thinks so.
  • Most tasteless video ever? A new video shows Jesus Christ dying at Auschwitz.
  • "It’s the smell that hits me first — musty, almost sweet, emanating from the green felt that cradles each piece of silver cutlery in its own place." Only one week left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • Mazel tov to Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky!
  • If it's true, it's pretty terrifying news.
  • “My mom went to cook at the White House and all I got was this tiny piece of leftover raspberry ganache."
  • Planning on catching "Fading Gigolo" this weekend? Read our review.
  • A new initiative will spend $300 million a year towards strengthening Israel's relationship with the Diaspora. http://jd.fo/q3Iaj Is this money spent wisely?
  • Lusia Horowitz left pre-state Israel to fight fascism in Spain — and wound up being captured by the Nazis and sent to die at Auschwitz. Share her remarkable story — told in her letters.
  • Vered Guttman doesn't usually get nervous about cooking for 20 people, even for Passover. But last night was a bit different. She was cooking for the Obamas at the White House Seder.
  • A grumpy Jewish grandfather is wary of his granddaughter's celebrating Easter with the in-laws. But the Seesaw says it might just make her appreciate Judaism more. What do you think?
  • “Twist and Shout.” “Under the Boardwalk.” “Brown-Eyed Girl.” What do these great songs have in common? A forgotten Jewish songwriter. We tracked him down.
  • What can we learn from tragedies like the rampage in suburban Kansas City? For one thing, we must keep our eyes on the real threats that we as Jews face.
  • When is a legume not necessarily a legume? Philologos has the answer.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.