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Misfiring Maccabi Haifa sack coach Atar

Tuesday 13 November 2012 17.38 CET
Maccabi Haifa are languishing in 13th in the Israeli Premier League

Maccabi Haifa FC have dismissed coach and revered former player Reuven Atar after winning just one of their opening nine games of the Israeli Premier League season. 

"This is the most difficult decision I have ever had to make in 20 years at the club," said owner Jacob Shahar. "I loved working with Reuven and respect him very much both as a coach and as a player. However, the situation we are in left me with no alternative." 

A former Israeli international midfielder, Atar won five championships and two State Cups during two spells at the club, spanning a total of ten years, between 1986 and 2002. Less than a year after retiring in 2003, he took over as assistant manager at Maccabi Netanya FC, before stints with Maccabi Herzliya FC and Beitar Jerusalem FC.

The 43-year-old made a heart-warming return to Maccabi Haifa this summer but failed to replicate the success he enjoyed as a player, collecting only seven points from nine matches to leave the team 13th – and second bottom – in the Premier League.

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