Masai Dago, the coach of the youth team of Maccabi Haifa, is at the top of the latest list of candidates for the position of coach of the senior team. Dego is highly regarded among the club’s management and next week a decision is expected to be made whether to go ahead with the move to appoint him as a replacement for Barak Becher who is supposed to leave in favor of Red Star Belgrade, or choose a foreign coach.
The announcement of Becher’s expected departure should come next week, after the championship celebrations are over and after Red Star also ends its season. Quite a few foreign coaches have been mentioned in the last month, among them the Serbian Zarko Laztic and the Polish Marek Pafshon, but the Greens also kept an option for an Israeli coach and that might be Dago.
As I remember, in Haifa they want Dekel Kenan in the team regardless of the identity of the coach. Shahar Weisinger, Hapoel Afula’s coach for the past two years, may also be part of the team.
The 37-year-old Dago, who ended his playing career in 2014, coached Hapoel Kfar Saba, Hapoel Ashkelon, Hapoel Petah Tikva, Ironi Kiryat Shmona and Hapoel Acre, before joining the green youth team. He led Maccabi Haifa to win the championship and to the cup final where they lost to Kiryat Shmona, and at the beginning of the season the team played in the Youth Champions League.
Let’s recall that Yaacov Shahar has already gone through the steps of appointing a coach from the youth team in the past. Roni Levy earlier in 2003 and marched the Greens to three consecutive championships, and nine years later Eric Bando was also promoted from the youth to coach the adults.