Our football match prediction:
Southampton will be looking to bounce back from a 1-0 loss to Sparta Prague when they welcome Hapoel Be’er Sheva at their St. Mary’s Stadium on Thursday evening. Coach Claude Puel mixed the squad against Sparta, but he is likely to field the best possible side against Hapoel as this has to go down as a must-win game for the Premier League side. It is well known that Southampton are a real force to be reckoned with at home and we believe that there is a big value in betting on the Saints this time out. Hapoel Be’er Sheva came from behind to beat Inter at home in their last group game, but they are unlikely to claim yet another scalp in the 2016/2017 Europa League campaign. Southampton defeated the likes of Sparta Prague and Inter on home soil earlier in the process and, taking everything into account, we predict that the hosts will emerge triumphant in Thursday’s football match.
Highlighted Player (Shane Long):
Shane Long is an Irish international striker who has so far made over 60 appearances for the Republic of Ireland national team, scoring more than 15 goals in the process. The forward began his professional career at Cork City, but only made one league appearance for the club ahead of the switch to Reading, where he would go on to spend next seven years. During that time, Long established himself as one of the best Irish strikers plying their trade in England, and also went on to represent West Bromwich Albion, Hull City and Southampton. Despite not exactly boasting an enviable goalscoring record for a centre forward, Long was always held in high regard by both managers and his peers, with his incredible work rate and never-say-die attitude winning him plenty of admirers. Long will also go down as one of the most prolific scorers in the history of the Republic of Ireland national team, which he represented at the Euro 2012 and Euro 2016 finals.
Highlighted Team (Hapoel Beer Sheva):
Hapoel Be’er Sheva are an Israeli football club based in Beersheba. The club was founded in 1949 and they play their home games at Turner Stadium. The capacity of the stadium is 16 126 and it was opened in September, 2015. Hapoel wear red shirts and white shorts when playing on home soil and they play in blue shirts and black shorts on the travels. The club played their first game against Mefalsim and they defeated their opponents 5-4. Back then no more than five teams competed in the Israeli league and it has to be noted that the likes of Hapoel Rishon LeZion, Hapoel Kfar Saba and Hapoel Ramat Gan were other teams that participated in the league. In 1975 Hapoel Be’er Sheva won their first Israeli Premier League trophy, with the team finishing the season three points clear of Maccabi Netanya. In the 2015/2016 season they won their third domestic trophy, leaving Maccabi Tel Aviv three points clear of them in the standings. Shalon Avitan is one of the most notable footballers who played for the club.