Hapoel Beersheba completed the signing of Marwan Kabha in the final day of the transfer window on January 31, 2018, beating out Maccabi Tel Aviv in the battle for his services..
(photo credit: JURIJ KODRUN)
Four days before they face-off on the pitch in Premier League action, Hapoel Beersheba beat Maccabi Tel Aviv in the battle for the signature of Marwan Kabha on Wednesday in the final day of the January transfer window.
Maccabi wasn’t left empty handed, completing a loan deal for the services of Gidi Kanyuk.
Kabha, who will celebrate his 27th birthday later this month, had offers from both Beersheba and Maccabi after making a decision to return to Israel following two-and-a-half years with NK Maribor in Slovenia.
The former Maccabi Petah Tikva midfielder, who has made four appearances for the Israel national team, ultimately chose to sign a four-and-a-half year deal with Beersheba, with one of the factors reportedly being his fear that he will have to contend with a small racist minority of Maccabi fans who publicly opposed his signing.
“The past few days have been pretty interesting to say the least, but eventually I made my choice and I’m at peace with it,” said Kabha, who played with Maribor in the Champions League group stage this season after helping the Slovenians knock out Beersheba in the playoffs.
“I’m happy to be joining the Israeli champion and from now on I’ll put everything that happened aside and focus on professional matters.
“Just as I was part of knocking Beersheba out of the Champions League, I hope to play a role in helping the team to qualify for the group stage.”
Following Kabha’s arrival, Beersheba allowed midfielder Vova Broun to join Ashdod SC on a loan deal until the end of the season.
Maccabi Tel Aviv, which is two points back of Beersheba ahead of Sunday’s showdown in Netanya, reached an agreement with Uzbekistan side Pakhtakor Tashkent FK for the loan deal of Kanyuk.
The 24-year-old midfielder joined Pakhtakor from Maccabi Petah Tikva this past summer.
“I am delighted to join Maccabi and hope to help the club reach its goals,” Kanyuk told the club’s website.
“Gidi knows the club and was part of the Maccabi youth set-up with Omer Atzili in the past,” said Maccabi’s CEO Ben Mansford.
“Gidi needs no introduction to our supporters after his recent goals against us and it is those qualities that we are pleased to have for the rest of the season.
What really impressed me about Gidi was his desire to play for Maccabi above and beyond any other consideration. That kind of mentality is exactly what is demanded at Maccabi and ultimately required for us to win trophies.”
Following Kanyuk’s addition, Maccabi’s 19-year-old midfielder Or Dasa has joined Hapoel Ra’anana on a loan deal.
Elsewhere, Ben Reichert, who didn’t appear in a single match for Zulte Waregem in Belgium since joining last summer, is returning to Israel to play for rock-bottom Hapoel Acre.