Mordechai Spiegler

120. Mordechai Spiegler

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Mordechai Spiegler made his international debut for Israel on 2 January 1964 against Hong Kong. He took part in the Israeli win in the 1964 AFC Asian Cup, and scored 2 goals at the tournament, which made him a joint top scorer of the tournament. His major achievement was helping Israel qualify for the FIFA World Cup 1970 in Mexico. He scored Israel’s lone goal in World Cup Finals history in a 1-1 draw against Sweden.
His 32 goals for the national team is the Israeli record. Mordechai Spiegler scored 25 goals in 62 ‘official’ internationals for the Israeli national side, he also played in 21 other ‘unofficial’ matches (mostly Olympic Games qualifiers) scoring seven more goals. Spiegler captained the Olympic team at Mexico City 1968 which reached the Quarter-Finals, losing to Bulgaria by a lottery after the match ended 1-1.
As a striker, Mordechai Spiegler played for Maccabi Netanya along with Paris Saint Germain in France and alongside Pelé for New York Cosmos of the North American Soccer League in the 1970s.  He was chosen as the Israeli Player of the Year a record four times in 1967/68, 1968/69, 1969/70, and in 1970/71.
After the 1970 FIFA World Cup Finals, Mordechai Spiegler had a successful trial with West Ham United but was refused a British work permit.
Mordechai Spiegler was nominated as the best Israeli player of the last 50 years by the Israeli Football Association in the UEFA Jubilee Awards in November 2003. Spiegler is currently a member of the Education and Publicity Committee of the IFA. In 2007, he won a lifetime contributions special award for the Israeli national team in the 1970 World Cup, as determined by Yedioth Ahronoth and the Israeli Football Players Association.

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Spiegler with Jimmy Greaves & Ron Greenwood Spiegler with Bobby Moore Spiegler with Geoff Hurst