Israeli born player, Yossi Benayoun played in the testimonial match of Mark Noble.

The right-wing midfielder played for West Ham in the 2012/2013 season while on loan from Chelsea FC. As West Ham move to the newly built Olympic stadium, they have had a splendid season that serves as a send-off.

They are in sixth position in the top flight league and are in contention for UEFA Champions league spot. The Hammers are also still in the FA Cup with a replay against Manchester United on Wednesday. The club celebrated Mark Noble’s testimonial in a great way recently.

The testimonial saw many past players return to the Boleyn ground. Israeli winger, Yossi Benayoun also returned to pay testament to the club captain at the event.

Yossi joined West Ham in 2005 and impressed in two seasons before his joining The Reds for 5.48 million Pounds. He returned to the squad in 2012 but currently plies his trade with Maccabi Haifa.
He played during the testimonial and commented on how the West Ham fans deserved a move to a bigger stadium.
“I had a good two years with West Ham and I had a good relationship with the supporters. The Boleyn Ground is a special ground and it’s also nice to see the Club having a great season in the last year. They are great fans here so I think they deserve a bigger stadium because they can fill any stadium. I wish them all the best in the future,” Yossi Benayoun said as shown on the club’s website.

Despite his spell at other English teams during the span of his career, Benayoun remains something of a cult hero at West Ham.

In the international scene, the player has been recalled to the Israeli national team where he achieved a record 97th cap for his country.

Yossi Benayoun

Yossi Benayoun was born in Israel on May 5 1980 and began his professional football career with Hapoel Be’er Sheva also in his native country.

After a short stint at Maccabi Haifa also of Israel, Benayoun moved to Racing de Santander of Spain from where he later moved to the English Premier League when West Ham came calling.

In 2010, the midfielder signed for Chelsea after spending a short time with Liverpool before being loaned out to Arsenal and later back to West Ham.

He however, returned to Maccabi Haifa of Israel after spending a season in the lower tier of the English league with Queens Park Rangers.

With 97 caps to his credit, the former West Ham player is his country’s most capped international.

Benayoun stirred up controversy when he decided to choose Liverpool over West Ham United after verbally agreeing to a new four-year deal in May 2007. The controversy which trailed his decision to sign for Liverpool in 2007 was further heightened when a newspaper publication reported that Benayoun’s Liverpool contract offer was less than what West Ham offered him.

This, however, didn’t stop the Kops from announcing the deal as the player was later unveiled as a Liverpool player in the middle of July after completing a deal worth £5 million.

After spending just one season at Queens Park Rangers in 2013, Benayoun returned to Maccabi Haifa in Israel. He signed a two-year deal reportedly worth the sum of $1 million. After his retirement, the former West Ham, Liverpool, and Queens Park Rangers player was made the Sporting Director of Maccabi Haifa.

On the international front, the midfielder made his senior debut for Israel against Portugal in an international friendly in 1988. In 2008, Yossi Benayoun was made the captain of his country national team. He remains one of the most decorated players his country has ever had.

Yossi Benayouncould be one of the names playing in the Australian A-League

Former Liverpool midfielder Yossi Benayouncould be one of the names playing in the Australian A-League if reports are to be believed.

The player, along with two other popular European names, have expressed their interest in playing for an Australian league club in the near future. The A-League is an attractive prospect for footballers at the final few years of their careers. It also represents a great option for those who are unable to secure moves to the MLS or the Middle East. The A-League recently expressed the need to sign popular names in order to boost the profile of the league.

Compared with the upcoming leagues like the MLS, the A-League spends significantly less on ageing former players. This means that the likes of Nicolas Anelka, Didier Drogba, and many other popular Premier League stars chose to go for MLS clubs or the Indian Super League. The A-League could have been an attractive proposition for players like Malouda as well.Benayoun, though, remains keen on this aspect according to the player’s agent.Benayoun is a well-known face for Premier League fans after having represented Liverpool from 2007 to 2010. He then moved to Chelsea where he played for a couple of years as a high-profile substitute.

However, his best time in the English league game while playing for West Ham when he helped the club stay up in the division against all odds. “The A League and Australia is a very attractive offer to many coaches and players, the lifestyle is very appealing, we hope to be able to help grow the game in an emerging market as well for the good of all football,” said Spanish agent Gustavo Crnko. Apart from the Israeli star, who currently plays for Maccabi Haifa, he also represents the likes of John Utaka and David Navarro.

Australian top flight Football is starting to lure some really good players

The Australian top flight Football is starting to lure some really good players especially the veterans.

The 37-year old Luis Garcia recently joined Central Coast Mariners and a couple of other veterans might also be on the plane to Australia soon.

John Utaka, who is without a club at the moment, and Yossi Benayoun, who is playing in his homeland Israel, both are believed to be interested in the offers from the Australian league.

Gustavo Crnko is the representative of these two players in the market and in one of his latest interviews; he did drop hints that he was busy negotiating deals for his clients in Australia.

According to Crnko, the way of living in Australia is quite appealing and that’s why, a lot of managers as well as the players are showing interest in pursuing their careers over there.

In the words of Crnko, “The no. of professionals getting attracted to A-League is increasing fast, be it players or managers, they want to go there. The reason, I believe, is that Australian lifestyle is quite fascinating.”

“If we manage to contribute in the development of Football in that part of the world, we would be happy and it would be great for the overall sake of the game as well.”

Crnko actually represents many Football professionals and he did not take any particular name in his interview.

So, it was a bit unclear which managers and players he was talking about, but, some of the other reports suggest that it’s Benayoun and Utaka who have been approached by the Australian clubs.

As far as Benayoun is concerned, he was believed to finish his career at Maccabi Haifa only and take up an administrative role at the club thereafter, but, he appears to have changed his mind now.

Steven Gerrard showed his class and skills in a 45 minute Appearance

Former Liverpool midfielder Steven Gerrard showed his class and skills in a 45 minute appearance against Club America. This was his debut for LA Galaxy after having recently completed the transfer from Liverpool.

The presence of Gerrard in the team was expected to significantly improve results and this has been the case after the 35-year-old helped LA Galaxy grab a 2-1 victory. Coach Bruce Arena said after the game that it was apparent for the fans witnessing the game that Gerrard was a significant step above the rest of the players. He expects more from the 35-year-old in the coming matches.

It has so far been a disappointing season for LA Galaxy, as they find themselves only in the fifth spot. Even though they are only one point away from table leaders Seattle Sounders, it would take a lot of consistent form in order to see them regain the top spot since there are a number of teams like FC Dallas who have played less number of matches than Galaxy. The match against Club America was merely a friendly encounter in the International Champions Cup. More important tests with the club in the coming weeks when they take on Real Salt Lake and Houston Dynamo.

“Steven played well - his passing was very good and his partnership with Juninho was good. He won some tackles and help create some chances. He also could have had a goal but the goalkeeper made a great save, so it was very encouraging. He looked like he belonged and his leadership was really good.He is probably about a month away from being fit enough to play a full match. It will take some games. It doesn't come from training, he will have to play some matches,” said underfire coach Bruce Arena about his new signing.

Mario Balotelli last Goal sealed Livepool Victory

A late goal from Mario Balotelli sealed Liverpool’s victory when they played against Tottenham Hotspur in Anfield as each team faced off in a Premier League match that was intense and thrilling from the start till the very end.

This result was a devastating one for Tottenham as they had come from behind on 2 different occasions and with only a few minutes left on the clock; Mario Balotelli emerged at the 83rd minute to score the winning goal for Liverpool as he scored his first Premier League goal for Liverpool since joining the English team.

Mauricio Pochettino left Anfield with a bittersweet taste as he watched his squad giving it everything they had on the pitch and playing at a high level but it wasn’t enough for Tottenham to claim a single point and the Argentinean manager was disappointed in this outcome which does not benefit the team in their race for the top spots of the Premier League.

"It's very disappointing because I think it was a great game, disappointing in the end at 2-2 and I think both teams deserved to take a point.I think in the first half we made some mistakes, but in the end we produced a very good performance and it's a shame." Mauricio Pochettino told the media.

However, even with this negative result there still are some good things to point out for Tottenham Hotspur and especially Mauricio Pochettino as the manager is creating a squad for the future with his faith and belief in young players as well rock hard training regimens.

Back when Pochettino was the manager of the Southampton squad, he made his players walk barefoot across burning coals during just one of his many tough boot camps training and things haven’t changed much for him even though he is in charge of a different club now in the White Hart Lane Stadium.

Harry Kane is currently the top goal-scorer of Tottenham Hotspur and he has stated that the training sessions of his team are basically mind over body as the pain that the players have to experience puts them into a new level not only physically but also mentally and this has helped the squad in going through matches with a high pace and intensity from start till the very end.

Kane said: “I think it has changed. We’ve been behind a lot in games this season but we’ve shown great character, stuck to our game plan and dug deep even in the final minutes and showed that again. We’ve made this a tough place to come.”

Sealing a Champions League spot is one of the objectives of Mauricio Pochettino and Tottenham Hotspur in this season but even if they don’t accomplish it, the future is starting to look bright for the club with a manager who arrived to the Premier League 2 years ago and is already making a huge impact not only in his club but outside of it as well.

Kieron Dyer against Rooney Rule

Former Ipswich Town and Newcastle United player Kieron Dyer, who has retired from football, he does not want the ‘Rooney Rule’ to be introduced into the football. This rule is rather famous in American NFL as it stipulates a certain number of black managers to be considered for the managerial role. Despite black players constituting a major part of the English game in recent times, only two black people have been able to secure a managerial job in all of England’s four leagues. This has resulted in suggestions that the introduction of‘Rooney Rule’ could help introduce more black managers.

Kieron Dyer is currently part of the Ipswich Town youth academy and he is widely expected to become a manager in the future. Widely regarded as a highly talented player,Dyer was unable to keep his career in the best possible shape due to a succession of injuries. The 33-year-old is working his way towards getting the coaching badges. However, he has rejected the proposal, along with defender Titus Bramble, about the possibility of introducing this rule. He does not want quotas help him get a job. Instead, he wants the job to be given based on his ability.

Bramble has also voiced the same concerns.“I want to be interviewed because the chairman wants to interview me.I don’t want to be interviewed because it’s filling a quota. I don’t want to be on a shortlist because football clubs are told I have to be because I’m black. I don’t agree with the Rooney Rule either. That’s me personally, it doesn’t mean it hasn’t worked in America, but I don’t like the idea here. I don’t want to sit down with a chief executive or a chairman and think I’m only here because I have to be.I want to prove myself independently of quotas,” said Dyer.

Benayoun Not Playing For Isreal

Yossi Benayoun is not going to be playing for his national side Israel in the forthcoming Euro qualifying matches.

The veteran midfielder, who is also the skipper of the Israeli side, had participated in the training camp the previous month, but, he failed to leave any impression on the boss Eli Guttman with his form.

One more big name is missing from the squad named by Guttman. It’s the striker Eden Ben Basat. The 28-year old had found the net 6 times in the World Cup qualifiers that he had played. So, his exclusion is eyebrow-raising to some extent.

As far as Benayoun is concerned, he had suffered muscle strain recently, but, he had shrugged that off to play his first match for his new club Maccabi Haifa. After that game, he had told the press that he expects himself to be in the squad for the Euro qualifiers, but, unfortunately for him, that was not to be.

Tal Ben Haim will probably be wearing the armband on the place of Benayoun.

Israel will also be having a new man standing between the sticks for them. Their regular stopper Dudu Awat has called it a day and it’s Ariel Haroush who would probably be replacing him.

There are a few guys who have been called back as well. Ben Sahar is the most notable name out of those. The striker who had been signed by Chelsea at the age of 17 only is currently playing in Netherlands. He has more than 30 caps for Israel already.

Most of the Israeli players are believed to gather in Shefayim tomorrow. The players, who are playing in Europe, would be coming a few days later, probably next week.

Israel will first play versus Cyprus and then, versus Andorra.

Benayoun Believes Teammates Did RIght Thing

Yossi Benayoun has said that his Maccabi Haifa teammates did the right thing by getting physical with the protestors who attacked them during their friendly game against the French club Lille the other day.

That match was taking place in Austria and Lille was ahead by a profound margin of 2-0. Just when the proceedings were about to get over, some people entered the ground and started beating the Haifa players. They were believed to be Pro- Palestinians.

At first, the Haifa players were taken by surprise, but, then, they also fought back.
According to Benayoun, his boys were left with no option. They had to try and defend themselves.

The statement of Benayoun was released by Haifa yesterday. That statement read, “As sportspersons, we are not at all for the physical spat during the matches, but, playing in Austria, we found ourselves in a very difficult situation. A group of people attacked us just because of the fact that we belong to Israel. We had to do something in our defence and we did that. I don’t think it was wrong on our part.”

“We, the older blokes, told the youngsters to stay away and we took it upon ourselves to protect them. It was necessary to do that at that point of time.”

“Our supporters should not change their views about us on the basis of that particular incident.”
The good thing was that none of the Haifa players suffered nasty injuries during that confrontation with the attackers.

Because of all the chaos, the remaining 4 minutes of the game never took place and the referee, at the end, announced the result in Lille’s favour.

The two players who had scored the goals for Lille before that incident were Simon Kjaer and Ryan Mendes.

Benayoun Beats Record

QPR midfielder Yossi Benayoun will be making a new record for the most number of appearances for an Israeli player. Israel will be playing in a friendly match against Mexico next week. The North American team will be preparing for the World Cup 2014. Israel, however, will be hoping to use this friendly match in order to test a couple of young players. Despite this, manager Eli Gutman says that the former Chelsea and Liverpool midfielder will be playing in this match, which would be creating a new record in the history books of Israeli football.

Benayoun has been one of the most talented players for Israel over the last few years. The fact that he has represented top clubs like Liverpool and Chelsea and has also played in the Champions League says a lot about his quality. Over the years, he has made 94 appearances for the national team. This is a record that he currently shares within the Israeli national team assistant coach Arik Benado. However, the 34-year-old midfielder will be going past the assistant coach when he makes an appearance against Mexico.

There will be little pressure on the player since he has just achieved promotion with QPR back to the Premier league, although it remains doubtful whether he will remain at the London club into the new season. “Benayoun has played well recently and he deserves to be called up. I’m not interested in the record. But if he is already going to break it, he deserves to do so in front of 100,000 fans at the Azteca Stadium,” said the manager speaking ahead of the match. This match is expected to witness a huge turnover with Mexico set to take part in the World Cup 2014 in a few weeks. They will be up against teams like Brazil in the competition.

Michael Essien

User login