Ronny Rosenthal

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Ronny Rosenthal
Flickr - Government Press Office (GPO) - Ronny Rosenthal.jpg
Personal information
Full name Ronny Rosenthal
Date of birth (1963-10-04) October 4, 1963 (age 51)
Place of birth Haifa, Israel
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Playing position Left winger/Striker
Youth career
1974–1979 Maccabi Haifa
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1979–1986 Maccabi Haifa 138 (38)
1986–1988 Club Brugge 43 (15)
1988–1990 Standard Liège[1] 54 (24)
1990 Liverpool (loan) 8 (7)
1991–1994 Liverpool 66 (14)
1994–1997 Tottenham Hotspur 88 (4)
1997–1999 Watford 30 (8)
National team
1983–1997 Israel 60 (11)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 01:26, November 20, 2007 (UTC).
† Appearances (Goals).

Ronny Rosenthal (Hebrew: רוני רוזנטל‎; born October 11, 1963), also known by the nickname Rocket Ronny, is an Israeli former footballer. After starting his career in the city of his birth with Maccabi Haifa, Rosenthal went on to play in Belgium with Club Brugge and Standard Liège. He moved to Liverpool in 1990 for a fee of £1.1million, becoming the first non-British player to move to an English club for more than £1million. After four years at Liverpool, Rosenthal finished his career with Tottenham Hotspur and Watford. Between 1983 and 1997 he made 60 appearances for the Israel national football team, scoring 11 goals.

Career[edit]

Playing career[edit]

Rosenthal was born and raised in Haifa, Israel. He joined the youth team of Maccabi Haifa when he was 11. At the age of 16, he was promoted to the senior squad and scored twice after coming on as a substitute.[2]

In 1982 English coach Jack Mansell tried to release Rosenthal on a free transfer. He assumed that "he will never be a player" and that he was the weakest link of the team.[citation needed] However club president Yochanan Vollach believed in Rosenthal's potential and intervened, stating he would not let him go for any price.[citation needed]

Shlomo Sharf was hired as the manager for the 1983–84 season. Sharf made Rosenthal part of a three-man strikeforce in a team that won two consecutive league championships. In total Rosenthal scored 38 goals for Haifa.

Rosenthal moved to Club Brugge of Belgium at the end of the 1985–86 season, for a transfer fee of $275,000. During the 1987–88 season he was part of the Brugge team they won the Belgian League and reached the UEFA Cup semi-finals.

In 1988 Rosenthal moved to Standard Liège as part of an exchange deal. Whilst at Liège, he was loaned out to Italian side Udinese and then in the midst of the 1989–90 season he was allowed to go on trial at English side Luton Town. Whilst he was there he was spotted by Liverpool who signed him on loan, from March 22 until the end of the season.

Rosenthal made his debut as a 70th minute sub on March 31, 1990 in a 3–2 league win over Southampton at Anfield. On April 11 he scored a hat-trick on his full debut in 4–0 win against Charlton Athletic at Selhurst Park. Liverpool went on to win the First Division championship that season, with Rosenthal scoring 7 goals in the final 8 matches and displacing Peter Beardsley as Ian Rush's strike partner.

On June 29, 1990 Rosenthal was signed permanently by Liverpool for a fee of £1.1m making him the first foreign player bought by an English club for more than £1m. He never made the same impact at the club, mainly making appearances from the bench and from January of the 1990–91 he was faced with another contender for his place in the team when Liverpool signed David Speedie.

He scored three goals in 20 league games in 1991–92, often covering for the injured Ian Rush, but was not selected for the FA Cup final winning squad.

One of his most famous moments while at Liverpool came in September 1992 in a game against Aston Villa, he hit the crossbar of an open goal from close range under no pressure.[3] His highest number of appearances in a league campaign for Liverpool came in 1992–93, when he fought off competition from underperforming and injury prone new arrival Paul Stewart to play 27 times in the Premier League and score six goals. However, it was not a successful season for Liverpool, who spent most of the season in the bottom half of the new FA Premier League (for which they had been among the pre-season title favourites) before a late surge saw them finish sixth.[1]

Rosenthal played 97 times for the club, scoring 22 goals and was placed at No.76 in the poll 100 Players Who Shook The Kop.

Rosenthal moved to Tottenham Hotspur on January 26, 1994, for a fee of £250,000, having played just three league games for the Reds that season. His sale from Liverpool came just 48 hours before the resignation of manager Graeme Souness.

He made his Spurs debut on January 29, 1994 in a 3–0 FA Cup defeat to Ipswich Town at Portman Road. On February 5 he scored on his league debut, a twenty-yard (18 m) header in a 3–1 home defeat to Sheffield Wednesday. During the 1994–95 season Rosenthal was instrumental in a 6–2 victory away at Southampton in a FA Cup 5th round replay. They were losing 2–0 at half-time, and Rosenthal scored a hat-trick. He made 100 appearances for Spurs, scoring 11 goals.

On the August 10, 1997 Rosenthal signed for Watford on a free transfer. He helped Watford win the Second Division championship, scoring the goal of the season against Blackpool.[4] He suffered from injuries in the 1998–99 season, playing only 5 matches. He retired at the end of the season, after making 39 appearances for Watford, scoring 11 goals. In total he scored 85 league goals in 4 different European leagues.

International career[edit]

Rosenthal has 61 caps for Israel, 41 starting and scoring 11 goals. He was selected for the junior side after making his Maccabi Haifa debut, and made his full debut whilst still at the club.

During his international career he was involved in the match versus France in 1993, which stopped France qualifying for the 1994 World Cup. Israel won 3–2 in Paris, with Rosenthal assisting all 3 goals. His individual goal against Azerbaijan in 1996, taking the ball from the Israeli penalty area, was voted as "Millennium Goal" by the Israeli public.[citation needed]

International goals[edit]

# Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
. 16 November 1994 Hüseyin Avni Aker Stadium, Trabzon, Turkey  Azerbaijan 2–0 2–0 Euro 1996 Q

Post-playing career[edit]

Rosenthal works as a "football consultant" and he and his family live in England. He married a woman from Belgium, Nancy, and their two sons, Dean and Tom, were born in England. One of his sons is director of a successful sporting management company - INTERFOOT. The other is a midfielder, enrolled with former club Watford's Academy, and holds caps for Belgium International football.[5]

Honours[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ronny Rosenthal at National-Football-Teams.com
  2. ^ "Ronnie Rosenthal". Jew of the Day. October 4, 1963. Retrieved January 27, 2011. 
  3. ^ "Extraordinary Soccer Miss". YouTube. Retrieved January 27, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Gone but not forgotten: Ronnie Rosenthal". Bsad.org. Retrieved January 27, 2011. 
  5. ^ Simon Burnton (November 16, 2007). "Small talk: Ronnie Rosenthal". London: Sport.guardian.co.uk. Retrieved January 27, 2011. 

External links[edit]