He is a striker whose skills were finally honed under the tutelage of an Englishman and now Israeli striker Tomer Hemed is being linked with a move to England himself.
When you consider the season he has had you can understand why. Currently plying his trade at Real Mallorca with international team-mate Dudu Aouate he has been in sensational form for club and country so far this season. With Israel he has bagged six goals since the start of the season and in the deep red of Mallorca he has been even more impressive with six goals in eight appearances.
It was humble beginnings for the man who was hardly an instant success as a young player, struggling for first team action at first club Maccabi Haifa and instead enjoying fruitless stays on loan at Maccabi Herzliya and Bnei Yehuda. It was a move to struggling Maccabi Ahi Nazareth where he finally found his inner talent. Former Aston Villa manager John Gregory was the man who brought him the to the childhood home of Jesus Christ and during his time at the club he described Hemed as his ‘star striker’. Despite his best efforts Hemed could not perform holy acts at the club and his nine goals couldn’t help a team ruined by hierarchical battles off the pitch stave off relegation.
On his return to Haifa he was a vastly improved player and finally started to grab goals on a regular basis. He bagged 18 altogether in 2010-11, earned his first Israel cap and a move to La Liga with Mallorca.
His first season was again humble with just ten goals in 35 appearances but his tireless displays have earned him many plaudits and it seems this year the pieces are finally coming together.
He has been described as a Premier League target in the press however only one team has been mentioned. Unfortunately that team is Liverpool, who are linked with almost every striker performing above average in Europe at this moment in time. Of course Hemed spoke up his chances of a move:
"I know that I am an option being considered by Liverpool to strengthen their squad and it is very flattering. To the best of my knowledge there have been no official contacts. I'm trying not to think too much about this at the moment."
At the moment he is causing a small stir in Spain but whether it is enough to see him at Anfield I am unsure.
But what do you think? Here he is in action for Maccabi Haifa…
image: © Vincent Teeuwen