A different Eli Cohen is set to become the new Beitar Jerusalem coach after
agreeing to personal terms with representatives of incoming owner Eli Tabib on
Cohen, who began coaching 15 years ago, will replace the current
coach of the same name and will be guiding a top club for the first time in his
career, assuming Tabib’s purchase of the club from Arkadi Gaydamak is approved
by the Israel Football Association’s Budget Control Authority.
a significant step toward finally becoming the new owner of Beitar last week
after the Jerusalem District Court approved the transfer of the club to his
hands from Gaydamak.
Tabib agreed to cover the club’s debts estimated at
NIS 12.5 million for a 75 percent stake of the club, with the remaining 25% to
be held by an organization of Beitar fans.
Tabib sold his ownership stake
at Hapoel Tel Aviv last year and the Budget Control Authority will have to
determine if he has served a year-long cooling down period as required by the
It will also decide if the charges he faces for
attacking a minor and disruption of justice relating to an incident outside his
home last year during a protest by Hapoel fans doesn’t prohibit him from owning
The Budget Control Authority could authorize the deal as soon as
The 52-year-old Cohen led Hapoel Ramat Gan to the State Cup for a
second time last month, but the team was relegated from the Premier League at
the end of the season.
He has also coached at Maccabi Herzliya, Holon,
Hapoel Ra’anana and Hapoel Acre.
“I’m excited to be here and I want to
guide Beitar back to its rightful place, which is the top of the league,” Cohen
Elsewhere, Elyaniv Barda is set to return to Hapoel Beersheba,
agreeing to a three-year contract with his boyhood club on Sunday.
32-year-old striker spent the past six seasons at Genk in Belgium, making 196
appearances in all competitions, scoring 67 goals, the most ever at the club by
a foreign player.
Barda began his career at Beersheba in 2001 and went on
to play for Maccabi Haifa and Hapoel Tel Aviv before moving to Belgium.