Hapoel Tel Aviv completed the signing of Daniel de Ridder onWednesday, agreeing to pay a reported £180,000 to take the Dutch-Jewishmidfielder on loan from Wigan Athletic for the rest of the season.
The 25-year-old, who began his career at Dutch giant Ajaxbefore moving on to Celta Vigo in Spain and Birmingham City, has notplayed for Wigan this season and made just 18 appearances for the clubduring its last campaign.
De Ridder, who has Israeli citizenship and speaks fluentHebrew, will arrive in the country on Thursday and may even feature inHapoel's crucial showdown with Maccabi Haifa on Monday.
"[The fact that I am Jewish] is playing a role in choosing theIsraeli league. Yes, I can speak Hebrew but more important is thatHapoel Tel Aviv is the current runner-up to Maccabi Haifa and stillplays in the Europa League," he told Sportweek.
"They qualified from a group with big teams likes Hamburg,Celtic and Rapid Vienna in first place. Now they play in the next roundagainst Rubin Kazan."
De Ridder will be hoping to revive his career in Tel Aviv.Despite starring for the Dutch youth teams, he has yet to fulfill hispotential at the senior level and a successful six months at Hapoelwill raise his stock ahead of the summer transfer window.
Bolivian international defender Miguel Hoyos will also arrivein Israel on Thursday and is expected to sign with Hapoel after passinga medical. The 28-year-old will join from Bolivian club Bolivar.