Local soccer: Guy Luzon takes over at Hapoel Tel Aviv

"This is a dream come true," says new coach of TA team.

soccer ball 88 (photo credit: )
soccer ball 88
(photo credit: )
Guy Luzon was confirmed as the new coach of Hapoel Tel Aviv Tuesday morning, replacing Nir Levin. The 31-year-old Luzon leaves Maccabi Petah Tikva, which is owned by his extended family, after six successful years in charge. Luzon guided Petah Tikva to a second-place finish in the 2004/05 season and reached the UEFA Cup group stage the following year. "This is a dream come true," Luzon said on Tuesday. "I'm proud and happy to join Hapoel. I have always aspired to reach such a big club." Luzon had long been rumored to be a personal favorite of the Hapoel owners and Tuesday's announcement came as no surprise. Despite winning the State Cup and finishing the season with a 3-0 derby win, Hapoel had no intention of offering Levin a new contract and was waiting for the season to end to finalize the signing of Luzon. Luzon, who signed a three-year contract, will be hoping he lasts at the club longer than the team's two previous coaches. Yitzhak Schum, who replaced Dror Kashtan last summer, was fired after just six months, with Levin leaving after less than four months in charge. Yossi Mizrahi, who led Betar Jerusalem to the championship, is expected to replace Luzon at Petah Tikva, returning to the club he coached successfully from 1999-2001. Also Tuesday, Betar announced that Israeli soccer legend Giora Spiegel signed a one-year contract as a consultant to club chairmen Eli Arazi. Spiegel, who as a player led the national team to the 1970 World Cup and as a coach guided Maccabi Haifa to the league title in the 1993/4 season, will advise Arazi on soccer matters. "My goal is to build a strategy for the club," Spiegel said. "I think that a club with the potential of Betar Jerusalem should be run like a European club." Arazi said: "I'm very happy Spiegel joined the team. I think that a man with his experience and knowledge will help us out a lot."