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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Nov 18, 2007

Media hail 'King of England' Golan for Israel win

JERUSALEM, Nov 18 (Reuters) - Substitute Omer Golan was hailed 'King of England' by an Israeli newspaper after his goal gave the side a 2-1 win over Russia in a Euro 2008 qualifier that boosted England's chances of reaching the finals.

Yedioth's sports section led with the headline and a picture of substitute Golan, who scored the injury-time winner which sank Guus Hiddink's men.

'Kashtan's babes beat arrogant Russia 2-1 and have handed the keys to Euro 2008 back to England,' the paper wrote.

England need a point against already-qualified Croatia in their final Group E clash at Wembley on Wednesday to reach next year's finals in Austria and Switzerland. Russia, who play Andorra, will have to hope England lose.

The Maariv tabloid said that with the victory Israeli soccer had 'entered the family of nations' and had 'shown contempt for all the conspiracy theories' spread before the match saying they would allow Russia to win.

Local media reported an English businessman had promised a Mercedes car to the player who scored the team's winning goal, however the Israeli FA said Golan would not be able to accept the gift because it was deemed to be 'beyond the bounds of sportsmanship'.

'Only the Israel FA can give incentives to the players. Certainly they cannot be given by any interested third party and obviously this applies when the offer comes from a fan of a team which has a direct interest in the result,' the association said in a statement.

Golan had joked he would take on Elyaniv Barda, who scored Israel's first goal and laid on the winner, to be his driver but said he did not mind missing out on the car.

'I really don't care about the Mercedes, my first goal for the national team (in a competitive fixture) means everything to me,' Golan was quoted by Hebrew sports Web site ONE as saying.