Billionaire to buy Hapoel Tel Aviv

Israeli-Russian millionaire expected to finalize on Tuesday afternoon purchase of 75% of Hapoel for NIS 20 million.

Lev Leviev 88 (photo credit: )
Lev Leviev 88
(photo credit: )
Israeli-Russian millionaire Lev Leviev is expected to finalize on Tuesday afternoon the purchase of 75 percent of Hapoel Tel Aviv for NIS 20 million. The deal, which stipulates that Leviev would take over in May, is pending the agreement of club director Rafi Agiv, who was part of a group that purchased the club in 1997. An official announcement from Hapoel said that under the control of the religious Leviev, the Premier League club will do whatever it can to make sure its matches will not desecrate the Shabbat. The purchase of the club is the fruition of a gentleman's agreement between Leviev and his close friend, Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, explained Leviev's press advisor Tal Rabina. "One year ago Leviev was asked by Abramovich why he doesn't invest in Israeli soccer. Leviev said that he will start to invest in soccer when the matches no longer take place on Shabbat and when Abramovich makes a donation towards Jewish activities abroad," Rabina said Monday night. "A few months ago Abramovich reminded Leviev that he had donated a large sum to a Jewish organization in Russia and therefore Leviev is now living up to his part of the deal and investing in Israeli soccer."