The year began with Erez Belfer on the sidelines, however after his departure, Amir Sofer who was part of Ran Elias’s staff replaced him and went on to win the Championship.

Sofer didn’t hide his excitement after winning and told the Official Club Website: “It’s never easy to join a team in the middle of the year, but Erez left a wonderful side for me to take care of. Since I was part of Ran Elias’s staff it was also a bit easier for me to get into the swing of things very quickly. I’m not going to lie, I had some concern about taking over the squad in the middle of the season, but thankfully everything went perfectly. I joined a terrific team that continued on its way and built on its success prior to my arrival.”

How the players reacted to the change:

“The players deserve a tremendous amount of credit. The squad not only changed its coach but also some of the players during the course of the season and they were able to handle it. They put in a tremendous amount of effort and motivation from practice to practice and from Saturday to Saturday. The players continue to learn and improve and you can see it on the pitch.”

The club’s direction:

“The most important thing that we want the players to understand is that wins and points aren’t at the top of the list of items that we are interested in, but rather how the players stand by the principles and standards of the club. Once they do that then the results will come. The staff hasn’t taken their foot off of the gas all year long and that’s also why we’ve won so many matches. The key to victory is counting to adhere to the principles and standards of the club during the actual games and at practice.”

The remaining matches this season:

“We’ve told the players that we are going to continue to practice and work hard until the final match. Our goals haven’t changed one bit and the fact that the two teams will be combined next season isn’t a major concern. There are plenty of things going on behind the scenes to ensure that the two sides come together as one club smoothly. The bottom line for us is that this is not a big deal.”

His personal feelings after joining the Youth Department:

“Personally, the club has given me a lot of confidence and it’s a tremendous amount of fun. Every little detail is examined at Maccabi and that’s what brings in the results. It’s an amazing experience to work here and I’m already hungry to begin next season.”