“Israel? There were things on the agenda, we preferred to stay”

“Israel? There were things on the agenda, we preferred to stay”
“Israel? There were things on the agenda, we preferred to stay”

“Power Woman”, as they recently called it Gal Rapalov In the Belgian media. “The Woman Behind the Golden Shoe Winner” expanded as part of an interview they conducted with someone who has recently become one of the talk of the day when it comes to local football. A different wave in the landscape. An Israeli who moved to Belgium 10 years ago, a model and manager of a jewelry chain, and of course, the wife of Lior Rapalov, who has established his status as one of the leading players in Belgian football.

A footballer’s career requires quite a bit of sacrifice and not only from the player himself, but no less from the family that often travels for many years between countries and disconnects from home. There are rare cases where an athlete finds a home in a foreign and distant country and settles in it for many years, and this was the case of Raphaelov. The person who left Maccabi Haifa almost 11 years ago found a home in Belgium and it is not only about his personal career, but also where his three children grew up, all of whom were born after making the move abroad.

While the player is making a force in Belgium and is considered one of the big stars in local football and also won the Belgian Golden Shoe, his wife Gal has also become a seller in the country. Last week in a game against Ghent, Raphaelov presented the golden shoe to the fans but one picture stole the focus – that of his wife Gal sending him a kiss. The image has gone viral on social media not just in Belgium.

In an interview with ONE, Gal Rapalov talks about the love of the audience, the deliberations that took place in the summer, the arrival in Anderlecht, also shares the frightening break-in to their home that they experienced in November 2019 and also looks forward. “This is a very happy month,” she says wave About the last period, when he was already used to hosting and celebrating Israeli holidays in Belgium. “There are a lot of holidays, we meet with friends, hosts and hosts. The children enjoy the holiday and experience all the customs and atmosphere of the period because there is a very large Jewish community here. ”

And what about the corona?
“Now everything is open and less corona is felt because most of the residents have already been vaccinated. “Unfortunately, my children fell ill in Corona and we had to be in isolation, but we are already behind and everything is fine.”

You have been overseas for many years, a lot of sacrifice on your part.
“True, we are over 10 years here in Belgium and we have a contract for another two years. There is definitely a sacrifice and I try to give it my all so that Lior will really be all about football, physically and mentally. It is clear that sometimes there are breaking points, but I have developed a lot and we have developed both in the marital, family and business aspects and I can only congratulate them on that. “

Gal and Lior Rapalov not only moved their lives to another country, but also started a family there. Adrian (8 and a half years old), Mia (6 and a half years old) and Alexandra (a year and a half) were born in Belgium and for them Israel is a vacation to see the family. “Of course raising children in a foreign country is not an easy thing,” she says. “There are a lot of difficulties and struggles that I am sure that with the family it was much easier. I am in very close contact with the families. When unpleasant things happen like the burglary we went through then the first phone call is of course for mom to get reinforcements. But I think as a couple we got a lot stronger and stronger, we are best friends, talk about everything and try, solve problems with the help of excellent communication and that is the key for me to a successful relationship. To be best friends, to share and especially to Pargan. “

Tell me about the break-in.
“It happened about a year and a half ago. I was in the ninth month with Alessandra and Lior was in an away game at Genk. I went to Adrian’s training with the two kids and when we got back all the shop windows were smashed, the house was completely destroyed. They took everything. All the lights were on so we thought there were more people in the house, I pulled the kids without shoes, with nothing, do not know where I got the powers from but I picked them both up and ran to the street. I quickly called a close friend of ours to come and we called the police. The police confirmed to me that it was a burglary, something I already knew. All the things taken it was painful I will not lie, but not as painful as the sentimental things that took us like the wedding rings boxes that were inside pictures of the kids and pictures of the ultrasound we kept. After that I did not feel safer, I felt that I was being followed all the time and I did not want to leave the house and during this time Lior was really by my side and took care of everything. My parents came too which helped a lot. We eventually made the decision to move house. We got stronger and stronger and in the end the most important thing is that we are all healthy and whole and that is behind us, God willing. “

“The Golden Shoe title is the pinnacle of his career. Great honor”

Lior won the Belgian golden shoe, but you also received an award.
“There was a competition of the most beautiful footballer’s wife in Belgium. They contacted me from the newspaper and I replied in the affirmative, doing us a number of newspaper interviews and photos. There was a really beautiful ceremony and at the end the winner was announced and I won first place. I was very excited and everyone really cheered. “

How did you feel about winning his title?
We were very excited about the class. It is a great honor to win this title in Belgium. “I think this title is the pinnacle of Lior’s career and being a partner in such a respectable list of great players who have won this title is a great honor.”

What do you miss most about the country?
“We have always missed the Israeli summer throughout the years. We always laugh that in Belgium in one day you can have 4 seasons. My children were born here and that is what they know, they speak the language and of course for them Belgium is their home and Israel is to come on vacation and visit the families. “

Have you been thinking of returning to Israel this summer?
“There were no thoughts of returning to Israel because there were negotiations from very senior groups here in Belgium. Whatever happens with the interest from Israel we leave it entirely to Lior Dudu Dahan’s agent. There were things on the agenda but we preferred to stay here. “Football is very dynamic at the moment. We have an agreement for the next two years and we are concentrating on that.”

Lior, who played for Club Brugge for 7 years and continued for another 3 years in Antwerp, arrived this summer at another luxury club – Anderlecht, where he joined former Manchester City player Vincent Kompany, who coaches the team. This did not go smoothly, when due to the fact that he signed at the club even before the end of the season, Antwerp decided that he would sit in the stands until the end.

Why Anderlecht?
“The decision to go to Anderlecht is because Vincent Kompany came into the picture and he was really interested in Lior. The respect and appreciation shown towards us by the management of Anderlecht made our decision easier. Of course after much thought we decided that professionally and personally it is best to sign here. “The relationship between Vincent and Lior is based on very good communication, they often talk after training hours about how to optimize the team to the maximum level.”

How did you feel when Antwerp did not allow him to play after signing for Anderlecht?
“When Antwerp’s decision was made not to allow it to play in the playoffs it was solely because Anderlecht and Antwerp were in a direct battle for second place in the playoffs. And yet all the top football officials in Belgium said it was the wrong decision. “

“Without mutual support we would not have been able to achieve our goals”

Lior is very popular in Belgium, how is it expressed?
“Everyone here in Belgium really supports and supports us. Lior is always modest but the sympathy and respect he gets here is just amazing to see. He gets so much appreciation here from big names and it’s commendable. I think it gives full value to all the hard work over the years on and off the field. In Israel, too, families and friends follow and support us all. ”

As mentioned, Gal manages the couple’s “Gala Jewelry” jewelry chain and aims for other things. “My goals personally are to be successful in my jewelry business. I am currently working on a project in the field of cosmetics and very soon I will go out with my own line together with the jewelry. “

What does a routine look like?
“I love spending every spare moment with my three children and husband, they are my anchor and for them I wake up every morning. To support Lior and allow him to focus solely on football, at the same time integrating the family and business that sometimes it is not an easy thing to do but I really like to be in action and welcome it. Lior is a very supportive and supportive husband and I think that without the mutual support we would not have been able to achieve our goals. “

You are very well known in Belgium, have you been offered to participate in a reality show?
“They approached us with suggestions for reality but at this point we politely declined. We are very busy each in his own field and of course also with our three children. Our routine includes the children’s interests – football, ballet, tennis, lots of sports. By and large, a very sporty family. “

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