Maccabi Herzliya star Josh Kennet is hoping to turn the club’s recent relegation into a positive as he fights to bring them back into the Israeli Premiere League and cement a regular first-team place.
The 20-year-old right-back moved to Israel last summer after being released from Oxford United. He had a brief spell with JC MSFL side London Maccabi Lions before flying to Israel where it took him just six weeks to get a three-year contract with Herzliya.
Since then he has made 15 appearances for Herzliya which he hopes to double in the next campaign.
Speaking from his home in Tel Aviv, Kennet, who likens the standard of the league to the Championship, believes that his second season in Israel will be even better. “I’m very happy with everything I achieved this season,” he said. “It is a great set-up at the club and to make 15 appearances is really good. Next season will be all about making sure the team push for promotion and obviously, cementing my place.”
Kennet made his league debut in the goalless draw at home to Hapoel Kfar Saba in November. He retained his place in a 3-0 away win over Bnei Sakhnin, setting up the opening goal.
However, despite some good performances, it was not enough to keep the club in the top flight. “I felt that everything changed after the Betar Jerusalem game when all the fans invaded the pitch and the game was abandoned,” he recalls. “I think the team lost a bit of focus after that; we were still playing well but were just not good enough. Now we need to come back even stronger.”
Having returned to England for three weeks to spend time with his family in North West London, Kennet will return to Israel for pre-season and has already set himself goals to achieve for the next campaign. He said “I aim to be playing in the side week in, week out, and will be looking to push into the Israel Under 21 set up.”