Glazer looks at the Israel National Team under new management while reflecting on his season at Red Star

Jun 6, 2024 | Football | 0 comments

As the Israel National Team is about to embark on their first games with brand new head coach Ran Ben Shimon on the sidelines when the blue-and-white face Hungary on Saturday night in Debrecen as well as Belarus on Tuesday in Budapest, keeper Omri Glazer looked ahead to the first test under “new management”.

Glazer featured for Red Star Belgrade in Serbia this past season which began under the tutelage of Israeli head coach Barak Bachar, however, following a disappointing UEFA Champions League campaign the bench boss was let go. Just before the national team heads out to Hungary the shot stopper looked ahead to the new challenge in front of him, the season that was with Red Star along with his thoughts about Ben Shimon and the squad that has been put together for these first two tests.

“First of all it’s fun to get a new start,” Glazer began. “This is a new team, there is new excitement and expectations and a new beginning. Ran is a proven coach who has already done great things in football, he understands the game very well and knows how to convey the message he wants. In the past few training sessions, we really started to work more tactically and understand what he wants from us. Every practice has new content and we work hard every day with the aim of putting together some solid games. We want to get good results.”

“Everyone here is deserving to be here,” the keeper continued. “No one here has done him a favor to receive a call up. Everyone in this squad are excellent footballers. For me, being a part of the national team is a great privilege and whenever I’m called, I will be here. It’s always with great pride to meet the fans, play with the uniform on and hear the anthem, especially during this period of time, one has to appreciate it even more. We have an excellent staff, quality players, great guys who all work hard in training. Everyone here wants to learn and listen, so there really are expectations. We are not coming in and just looking at this as a friendly game. We will come into this matchup ready to go in order to record a good result.”

Glazer also looked back at the season that was in Belgrade, “It was a challenging start and it was also an experience. Of course I’m happy that it ended the best way possible with a domestic double and I really enjoyed it and I’ll still enjoy it there as I have a contract for another three years. There are all kinds of rumors of this and that, but I don’t bother with them, as long as there is nothing concrete that needs to be discussed, I’m at the Red Star.”

Bachar was the reason why Glazer made his way from Hapoel Beer Sheva to Red Star, “I came thanks to Barak and goalkeeper coach Guy Weisinger. I have no complaints about my time so far with the team as everyone knows how high quality it is, how much they all love football there and how much they want to succeed and work hard every day in training. Sometimes in football there are things that occur that is not determined by ability only. There are some games that are decided by luck, a miss or a mistake of one kind or another and the better side doesn’t always win, that’s part of the game. Sometimes there are other factors along the way, it is true that in the end that Barak was fired, but this was the team he built.”

Glazer also reflected on the Champions League campaign, “The Champions League is a totally different opera. It’s true that we could have achieved better results and we had a very difficult time at home with Manchester City, Leipzig and Young Boys but these are first class teams. It’s true that we wanted to and could have gotten better results, but in football what you want is not always what you get. Now Barak is starting his career again at Maccabi Haifa and I wish him all the success in the world.”

Putting on the Israel National Team kit is always a thrill the shot stopper explained, “I get excited before every game, even when I play in the neighborhood I get excited. Especially wearing the national team’s uniform there is a different excitement as it’s not something that happens every day. We get together once every few months and as I said during this time period, wearing the uniform gives me even more goosebumps than usual.”

Due to the war, many Israeli athletes throughout the world are feeling some type of stress and pressure from the general population, but thankfully for Glazer in Belgrade that has not been the case.

“I have received absolutely amazing treatment, whether it’s from people on the street or from my teammates, they are constantly asking how I’m doing and they take care of me all the time. I did not have any unpleasant situations or any type of manifestations of anti-Semitism towards me or towards my family, my wife and my parents who came to visit a lot. From this point of view, it’s an amazing place.”

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