Maccabi Netanya goalkeeper Ariel Harush..
(photo credit: ERAN LUF)
The complete overhaul taking place at Hapoel Tel Aviv continued over the weekend with the signing of two more players.
The addition of Romanians Claudiu Bumba and Mihai Pintilii took the number of new players at the club to eight, with negotiations with several others still ongoing.
The 21-year-old Bumba joins from Targu Mures of the Romanian league, with 30-year-old Pintilli, who has made 24 appearances for the Romanian national team, playing for Pandurii last season.
They join Omri Altman, Ariel Harush, Adi Gotlieb, Samuel Scheimann, Issoumaila Lingane of the Ivory Coast and Hungarian David Kelemen, who have all signed for the team in recent weeks.
The impressive shopping spree by new majority owner, Amir Kabiri, who purchased Haim Ramon’s 50 percent stake at the club, is by no means over, with Ben Sahar, Gai Assulin and Romanian striker Liviu Antal, who played for Beitar Jerusalem last season, among those still being chased by Hapoel.
The club is hoping to finish the rebuilding of the squad in time for the start of training next week under new Spanish coach Cesar Mendiondo.
Meanwhile, Maccabi Tel Aviv will begin its pre-season training on Tuesday, exactly three weeks before its first Champions League qualifier.
New Serbian coach Slavisa Jokanovic will arrive in Israel on Sunday and will hold his first press conference at the club ahead of the opening day of training on Tuesday.
Maccabi will find out on Monday who it will face in the Champions League second qualifying round. The yellowand- blue will be seeded in the draw and is not expected to encounter too much trouble on the way to the third qualifying round. The first leg of the second qualifying round will be held on July 14-15, with the return leg to be played one week later.
The Premier League season is scheduled to begin on August 22, but could be postponed due to the uncertainty regarding the future of the Israel Broadcasting Authority. The IBA is entering the third and final year of its deal with the Premier League and is supposed to pay NIS 15 million for the right to show the match of the week. However, IBA officials recently notified the Premier League that they will struggle to fulfill the agreement because of the delay in the establishment of the new broadcasting enterprise set to replace the IBA.
Should the IBA fail to transfer the money, several of the league’s smaller clubs will be unable to meet the league’s minimum budget, which could postpone the start of the season until