BETAR JERUSALEM’S Barak Moshe 390.
(photo credit: Asaf Kliger)
Betar Jerusalem has a new savior, and it’s a familiar face.
will begin his third tenure at the club on Tuesday after signing a contract to
guide the team until the end of the season following a three-hour meeting with
chairman Itzik Kornfein on Monday.
The 61-year-old Cohen, who began his
coaching career at Maccabi Ramat Amidar in 1987, first guided Betar in 1995 and
led it to the league championship in 1996/97.
He left at the end of that
season, but returned to help save the team from relegation in
That experience could be very valuable in the coming months as
he tries to steer Betar away from danger.
Jerusalem is currently in 12th
place in the Premier League standings, just two points above the relegation
zone, and has netted a meager 16 goals in 25 matches this season, eight fewer
than the second-worst scoring team in the league.
Yuval Naim resigned
last week after losing faith in the squad, but Cohen will have to find a way to
get more out of the Betar players, starting with Monday’s match against Maccabi
Tel Aviv at Teddy Stadium.
Meanwhile, Maccabi Haifa climbed to sixth
place in the table on Monday with a 4-1 victory over Maccabi Petah Tikva at
Kiryat Eliezer Stadium.
In what was perhaps its best match of the season,
the reigning-champion demolished Petah Tikva for its third win in four matches
to keep alive its hopes of qualifying for European competition.
Katan gave the Greens the lead with an exquisite free kick in the eighth minute
and set up Mohammad Ghadir for Haifa’s second in the 24th.
made it a rout with two strikes in the second half (50, 64), with Tal Ben-Haim’s
goal (79) no consolation for Petah Tikva, which had entered the match with two
straight wins under new coach Moshe Sinai.