Eran Zahavi: "I was the last person to be named an Ambassador for Peace in Sport of the Peres Center by the late Ninth President Shimon Peres. I am committed to the Center and to promoting its activities and its message. As we approach the events marking one year since the passing of President Peres - I feel very emotional by this closure as we came full circle here today."
Eran Zahavi, captain of the Israel national football team and player on Guangzhou R&F in the Chinese Premier League, announced today (Thursday) his desire to return to Maccabi Tel Aviv during a joint activity held at the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation. "My departure was not easy; I watched Maccabi Tel Aviv last season and I want to go back to Bloomfield and take the championship."
Zahavi added: "I was the last person to be named an Ambassador for Peace in Sport of the Peres Center by the late Ninth President Shimon Peres. Over the past year, both when I am in China and when I am in Israel, I feel connected to the Peres Center and committed to promoting its activities and message. The connection between me and the Center is important to me and I hope that it will continue to grow and develop. As we approach the events marking one year since the passing of President Peres - I feel very emotional by this closure as we came full circle here today."
At the end of his remarks, Eran Zahavi stated that: "I will be happy to organize, together with the Center, the first exhibition game between the Israeli and the Chinese teams. If you will permit me - I will play half of the time with Israel and half with China."
During the event, an exhibition match was held with 40 young participants from the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation from Nir Am, Ram, Ein Rafa, Beit Shemesh, Nativ Hahamed and Meitar. Afterwards, a special event was held with the son of the late Ninth President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Peres Center, Chemi Peres, Eran Zahavi, and the Ambassador of China in Israel, Ambassador Zhan Yongxin.
Chemi Peres: "Eran Zahavi is not just a football star in China, but also a pioneer and role model, not only for you - the children - but also for me. Eran has been promoting Israeli-Chinese relations in recent years, and not only through football. "
The Ambassador of China in Israel, Zhan Yongxin: "Eran and I are both ambassadors, but I know that Eran is more admired in China than any other ambassador."
Photos Silvia G. Golan