Haifa hero on the way


Tomer Hemed is close to agreeing terms with Rangers. The Maccabi Haifa striker, 24, is reportedly being offered a three-year contract at Ibrox worth between £7,000 to £8,000 a week.

However, we understand that no deal will be signed until Hemed receives his Polish passport, probably next week. Granting of the passport should be a formality because Hemed's mother was born in Poland but without EU citizenship.

Hemed made his international debut for Israel earlier this month but would not be eligible for a UK work permit.

Although Hemed is being tightlipped about the move to Scotland, recently-appointed Rangers boss Ally McCoist has made it clear he wants to sign the forward. "We'll talk to his agents over the next couple of days," McCoist said. "I've had some great reports on him. By all accounts he's a good lad, very professional. He has a good pedigree and a good attitude."

Hemed's five-year contract at Haifa expires this month and the player had not been offered an extension because he had been considered a flop.

Celtic's Israeli midfielder Beram Kayal has appointed Pini Zahavi as his new agent. Kayal has begun talks for an improved contract and has also been the subject of interest from Bolton and Sunderland.

Portsmouth defender Tal Ben Haim is reportedly suing the club for £1.4 million in unpaid wages but says he still wants to play at Fratton Park.

Betar Jerusalem manager Ronny Levi has been appointed manager of Steaua Bucharest and hopes to take midfielder Amit Ben Shushan with him to Romania.

Dror Kashtan, the former Israel boss, has replaced Eli Guttman at Hapoel Tel Aviv.

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