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Omri Affeck

(1979 - )

Omri Affeck, who grew up in the ranks of Hapoel Kiryat Ono, was the greatest soccer prospect the northern city had seen in decades. He was quickly recruited by Hapoel Tel Aviv midway through the 1997-98 season. The following season, Affeck was sent on loan to Maccabi Jaffa, where he started 15 games and scored three Israel League goals.

Coach Dror Kashtan sensed Affeck's potential and brought him back to Hapoel Tel Aviv for the 1999-2000 season, and the team won the Israel League and Israel Cup "double" that year. Omri was also instrumental in the Reds' progression to the UEFA Cup quarterfinal during the 2001-02 season.

As a member of Hapoel Tel Aviv in the Israel League during the 2002-03 season, Omri scored a career-high seven goals, while doing a great job for the national team on the wing. However, his scoring could not make up for the lack of striking power for the Reds, and Hapoel finished third behind Maccabi Haifa and Maccabi Tel Aviv.

Affeck was released by Hapoel in the off-season. After being linked with many clubs, he signed with Racing Santandar for the 2003-04 season, where he joined compatriots Yossi Benayoun and Dudu Awat. In international competition, during a crucial European Championship qualifying match against Cyprus, Omri scored the only goal for Israel in a game that ended 1-1. A few days later, against France, Affeck struck early again, scoring in the first minute. With his stunning performances, Omri has won the right winger spot on the national team.

Source: Jews in Sports