Hapoel Tel Aviv’s coach Guy Luzon.
(photo credit: DANNY MARON)
Hapoel Tel Aviv’s moment of truth arrives on Tuesday, with its future to be determined at the Tel Aviv District Court rather than on the pitch.
Hapoel is in serious danger of going into administration after the Tel Aviv District Court approved earlier this month a request for a stay of legal proceedings due to debts estimated at over NIS 100 million.
The trustees were given until Tuesday to present the court with a new potential owner to replace Amir Kabiri, and it will be revealed today whether any bids were made for the bankrupt club.
Hapoel’s players showed an impressive fighting spirit in a 1-1 draw at reigning champion Hapoel Beersheba on Sunday, moving four points clear of the relegation zone.
However, a nine-point deduction is still hanging over the team, with judge Eitan Orenstein to determine on January 11 whether to approve the punishment as stipulated by Israel Football Association regulations.
“The last thing I and the players want is to be sacked,” said Luzon. “I think that if a new owner comes in he will find a good foundation here on which a good team can be built. We are a little down, but are hoping for the best.”
Meanwhile, Georginho’s 90th-minute winner gave Bnei Sakhnin a surprise 2-1 win at Maccabi Haifa on Monday night.
The Greens took the lead through Dekel Keinan’s header in the 19th minute, but Ramzi Safouri equalized in the 74th minute and Georginho clinched the win after another break forward which caught Haifa’s defense napping.
Haifa missed a chance to move up to third place, while Sakhnin climbed up to sixth, extending its unbeaten run to five games.
“We are happy with our current position, but we are taking one match at a time and aren’t thinking too far ahead,” said Sakhnin coach Yossi Abuksis. “We have a match against Beersheba next week and that is our focus.”