Israel have plans for Bale, says Guttman


Eli Guttman has named a 25-man squad for Israel's Euro 2016 qualifying double-header against Wales and Belgium.

Group B leaders Israel host Wales on Saturday night in Haifa followed by Belgium on Tuesday in Jerusalem.

Israel go into the matches with a 100 per cent record from their first three games against Bosnia, Cyprus and Andorra.

Guttman is confident that Maccabi Tel Aviv captain Sheran Yeini can subdue Real Madrid's Gareth Bale as Israel attempt to secure automatic qualification for what would be their first European Champions finals.

He said: "I remember that Yeini kept Ronaldo quiet when Portugal played here two years ago. And if Ronaldo got round him there was another player to stop him.

"We must keep it tight with Bale and not give him a lot of space, otherwise he'll kill us."

Bale featured in Real Madrid's La Liga defeat against Barcelona, but Guttman believes he will feature heavily in the Haifa clash.

"I've a feeling Bale saves himself for Wales," said Guttman. "His level of commitment to Wales is nothing like the way he plays for Real Madrid.

"I've seen Aaron Ramsey playing for Arsenal recently and he was fantastic.

"Wales are made up of Premier League stars, but they also have great team spirit. That is our strong point too although we also have stars."

There will be little recovery time as a star-studded Belgium team, who will be missing Everton striker Everton striker Romelu Lukaku, are Israel's next opponents.

"Belgium too is an exceptionally strong team, also with mainly Premier League players," said Guttman.

Guttman has injury concerns over captain Tal Ben Haim, who has missed the last two Charlton matches with a stomach strain, while Gili Vermouth is ruled out altogether.

Former captain Yossi Benayoun has been left out of the squad, despite an impressive run of form for Maccabi Haifa. Brighton midfielder Beram Kayal has been recalled.

Lior Refaelov looks certain to make the starting XI after scoring the winning goal for Club Brugge in the Belgian cup final against Anderlecht. He has also helped the team reach the Europa League quarter-finals.


Ofir Martziano (Ashdod), Ariel Harush (Maccabi Netanya), GuyHaimov (Kiryat Shmona)

Eli Deisa (Beitar Jerusalem), Orel Degani (Maccabi Haifa), Tal Ben Haim (capt.) (Charlton), Rami Gershon (Gent), Omri Ben Harush (Maccabi Tel Aviv), Eitan Tibi (Maccabi Tel Aviv), Taleb Tawatha (Maccabi Haifa), Sheran Yeini (Maccabi Tel Aviv)

Nir Bitton (Celtic), Bibras Nakho (CSKA Moscow), Beram Kayal (Brighton), Eran Zahavi (Maccabi Tel Aviv), Omer Damari (Leipzig), Roi Kahat (Kiryat Shmona), Maor Buzaglo (Hapoel Beer Sheva), Lior Refaelov (Club Brugge).

Tomer Hemed (Almeria), Itay Shechter (Maccabi Haifa), Ben Sahar (Willem), Elyaniv Barda (Hapoel Beer Sheva), Moanes Dabour (Grasshoppers), and Tal Ben Haim (Maccabi Tel Aviv).

EXPECTED STARTING XI vs WALES: Martziano, Ben Haim, Gershon, Degani, Yeini, Bitton, Natkho, Refealov, Zahavi, Damari, Ben Haim

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