Ellie Greenberg ’20 signs professional contract with Israeli soccer team

By Charles Crounse

After four years on the Middlebury field, Ellie Greenberg ’20 has seen her soccer career flourish following graduation, recently signing a deal with the ASA Tel Aviv women’s team in Tel Aviv, Israel. 

“It is really special to be playing in Israel,” Greenberg said. “Most of my family is here right now, and the weather is beautiful so we can continue playing outside safely. Also, I have a really strong Jewish identity, so it is both so comforting yet still surprising when my coach wishes everyone a ‘Shabbat Shalom’ at the end of our last practice before the weekend.” 

Ellie Greenberg proudly wore No. 33 during all four of her seasons at Middlebury. (Courtesy: Ellie Greenberg)

Greenberg spent four years as a forward in the Middlebury women’s soccer program, even scoring the game-winning goal in the Panthers’ 2018 NESCAC Championship victory. She appeared a total of 66 times for the Panthers, netting 12 times and assisting a further seven.

Greenberg has loved soccer for as long as she can remember, citing an intrinsic appreciation for the sport itself and the mental resolve it requires. She also named her older sister, who she spent many weekends watching on the college lacrosse field, as one of the biggest factors in her love for sports.

Greenberg added that the Middlebury community has been another influence on her career. Throughout her career in Middlebury, Greenberg was a member of both the soccer and track and field teams. 

They took me all over the country from North Carolina to California,” Greenberg said. “And they gave me some of my happiest memories. I will never forget when the clock ran out and the entire team dog-piled on Ursula (our goalie) to celebrate our NESCAC Championship win.”

Now donning the No. 5 jersey for the most successful club in Israeli women’s soccer, Greenberg hopes that her story can inspire many young girls who, just like her, have a natural love for sport.

Greenberg controls a ball in a match for ASA Tel Aviv Soccer Club. (Courtesy: Ellie Greenberg)

Greenberg notes soccer as a defining aspect of her life that has not only allowed her to hone her athletic abilities but also her self-advocacy, leadership, concentration and dedication. She hopes that other girls will follow her path and channel sports into empowerment, both as athletes and as women. 

Sports have helped cultivate my voice,” Greenberg said. “Not just on the field, but in the classroom and in life.” 

Greenberg’s ASA Tel Aviv team currently sits in fourth place in the Israeli Women’s Premier League as they aspire to add to their league-leading six division titles. Greenberg will next be in action on Thursday, March 18, as ASA Tel Aviv takes on Hapoel Be’er Sheva.