ISRAEL COACH Eli Gutman 370.
(photo credit: Adi Avishai)
Israel coach Eli Gutman handed Excelsior Rotterdam defender Samuel Scheimann and
Brest striker Eden Ben-Basat their first call-ups to the national team on
Wednesday ahead of the upcoming friendly encounters against the Czech Republic
Injured goalkeeper Dudu Aouate and striker Elyaniv Barda
were both left out of the 25- man squad, which will leave Israel for
Stegersbach, Austria on Sunday for a two-week training camp which will include a
meeting with the Czech Republic on May 26 and a friendly against Germany in
Leipzig on May 31.
“During the training camp we will focus on the
tactical, managerial and mental aspects,” Gutman said on Wednesday. “We will
implement a clear playing system and build the team in a way that will allow us
to play our best soccer, raising the level of belief in our ability to achieve
our goal of reaching the 2014 World Cup.”
Israel’s lack of depth in the
defensive positions led Gutman to Rotterdam where the 24- year-old Scheimann has
lived since his family moved to the Netherlands from Israel 19 years
Gutman will be hoping Scheimann can fill Israel’s glaring need at
left-back, with his newest recruit making 30 league appearances for Excelsior,
mostly in that position, this season.
“I’ve dreamed of this day for a
long time,” said Scheimann, who experienced unsuccessful trials at Maccabi Tel
Aviv and Maccabi Netanya, among others, at the start of his professional
“I’ve always wanted to play for Israel. I can’t wait to meet the
coach and the players and I’m grateful for this opportunity.”
has enjoyed a relatively successful first season in Europe, making 32 league
appearances for Brest in France’s Ligue 1, scoring four goals.
those returning to the squad are Celtic’s Biram Kiyal, who has recovered from a
long-term injury, as well as Gili Vermut and Itay Shechter, Gutman favorites from
their time together at Hapoel Tel Aviv.
Israel gets its 2014 World Cup
qualifiers underway with a road match against Azerbaijan on September 7 ahead of
which it is scheduled to play another warm-up game against Hungary on August
Israel, which is dreaming of reaching its first World Cup since 1970,
will face Portugal, Russia, Northern Ireland, Azerbaijan and Luxembourg in Group
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