A recent recruiting trip to Tel Aviv, Israel, paid off for Kansas women’s soccer coach Mark Francis.
No stranger to international recruiting, Francis announced the addition of Israeli standout Shira Elinav to KU’s 2020 roster on Friday.
Elinav comes to Kansas with a reputation as one of the top young players in her country and with a list of accomplishments that includes three years of competition on the Israeli youth national team. She also played last fall on Israel’s senior national team, appearing in six EURO qualifiers.
“When we got the initial video on Shira, it looked really good, enough so that I flew over to Tel Aviv to see her play live,” Francis said in a news release announcing Elinav’s signing. “That just confirmed what we saw on the video.”
Elinav’s top skill is her ability as a scorer.
“She is very quick,” Francis said, “and because of that she is a threat to stretch the opponent’s back line and has a great 1-v-1 mentality. Shira has the ability to finish in different types of scoring scenarios, but also is aware enough to find teammates that might be in better goal scoring positions. She also has a great mentality to win the ball back immediately after her team loses possession. She has a tremendous work rate. I anticipate her helping us right away.”
Elinav becomes the 10th newcomer signed to join the Jayhawks this fall. She is expected to be a key part of a class that is looking to replace six departing seniors, three of whom were starters on the 2019 squad that finished with a 17-5-3 record, claimed the program’s first Big 12 Tournament title and advanced to the NCAA Sweet 16.