Buzaglo back for Beersheba ahead of Mac Haifa clash

January 4, 2016 03:03
2 minute read.
Maccabi Tel Aviv

Maccabi Tel Aviv midfielder Eran Zahavi and Hapoel Beersheba defender Ofir Davidzada are set to clash once more when the Premier League leaders meet tonight at Bloomfield Stadium.. (photo credit: ERAN LUF)


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Maor Buzaglo was Hapoel Beersheba’s best player over the last two seasons, but a stomach injury combined with the team’s scintillating form without him has seen him become an afterthought this campaign.

The midfielder, who will celebrate his 28th birthday later this month, started in four of his team’s first five matches, before being sidelined with injury. Beersheba won just two of its first five games and started its current unbeaten run after coach Barak Bachar was forced to make a change to his lineup due to Buzaglo’s absence.

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Beersheba is unbeaten in its last 11 league contests, winning 10 of those matches to pick up 31 of a possible 33 points over that stretch.

Buzaglo returned to action after almost three months out in the 2-1 win over Maccabi Tel Aviv two weeks ago, also coming on as a substitute in last week’s 2-0 victory over Hapoel Ra’anana.

He is set to finally be handed a renewed opportunity in the starting lineup against Maccabi Haifa on Monday, taking the place of Maor Melikson, who is sidelined with a muscle strain.

“I’m very excited to be back,” said Buzaglo on Sunday. “It was tough to watch the team from the side and for me the season starts today. It is especially fun to return to a team that is doing well. When you are injured you have a lot more time to work on your game and sometimes that helps you improve other aspects.”

Beersheba has yet to win at Haifa Stadium, a streak it will be confident of ending on Monday.

Beersheba, which will leapfrog Maccabi Tel Aviv and return to first place as long as it doesn’t lose, has come up short in all six of its previous visits to the new stadium in Haifa, but enters Monday’s match on the back of a five-game winning streak.

After its poor start to the campaign, Haifa is unbeaten in its past six matches and can climb to fifth place with a win over Beersheba.

“We are entering a tough match. Haifa is a good team in good form,” said Beersheba coach Barak Bachar.

On Sunday, Hapoel Tel Aviv and Hapoel Haifa drew 0-0 at Bloomfield Stadium.

Both teams moved to 18 points and are just two points off the relegation zone after another poor display. Tel Aviv has gone five matches without a win.

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