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October 15, 2020 4:38 pm

Soccer Legend Eran Zahavi’s Hat-Trick Powers Israel to Comeback Victory Over Slovakia in UEFA Nations League

avatar by Algemeiner Staff

Israeli goalkeeper Ofir Marciano and defender Eli Dasa bump fists with their Slovak opponents following their 3-2 victory in the UEFA Nations League. Photo: Reuters / Radovan Stoklasa.

Veteran forward Eran Zahavi notched a hat-trick of goals on Wednesday as Israel came back from a halftime deficit to defeat Slovakia 3-2 in their contest in the UEFA Nations League.

Home side Slovakia led the Group B contest at halftime 2-0, after midfielder Marek Hamsik opened the scoring with a spectacular free kick that took Israeli goalkeeper Ofir Marciano by surprise.

But the second half turned out to be a master class from 33-year-old striker Zahavi, who scored the first of this three goals in the 68th minute, confidently heading the ball into the goal from a corner kick.

Eight minutes later, Zahavi struck again, this time tapping in the ball from close range.

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Zahavi — who recently signed for top Dutch side PSV Eindhoven — saved the best for last, netting Israel’s winner with a stunning 20-yard shot in the dying seconds of the game.

The result was Israel’s first victory in four matches in the Nations League, a new contest that brings together Europe’s national soccer teams.

Israel currently sits third in Group B, five points behind the group’s leader, Scotland, on 10 points.

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