Luz, Ben : Jews In Sports @ Virtual Museum

Luz, Ben

Luz is a diminutive playmaker who made his international debut in a friendly against Armenia.

Birth and Death Dates:
b. Feb. 18, 1978

Career Highlights:
As a teenager, Luz broke into the Maccabi Tel Aviv senior team during their luminous 1994-95 championship season. In his debut with the club, Luz scored the winning goal against Maccabi Petah Tikva. The young midfielder scored another goal that year, while he struggled to establish himself in the first team.

Luz was set to play a bigger role during the 1995-96 season, but he suffered a terrible injury while the club went on to capture the Israel League and Israel Cup "double." The injury ruined Luz's season and affected his future performance. He was still not fully fit the following year, and his playing time was limited. In addition, he faced stiff competition from Maccabi favorite Avi Nimni.

When Nimni left to go abroad during the 1997-98 season, Luz finally got some long-awaited playing time. He scored two league goals plus an assist and Maccabi finished a disappointing sixth. 1998-99 was another disappointing season for Luz as he was given merely six starts for Maccabi. Following a forlorn 1999-2000 campaign, Ben gave up and decided to play elsewhere.

Luz started the 2000-01 season with Hapoel Haifa, but never fit in with that cohesive unit. He moved to Eli Ohana's relegation-threatened B'nei Yehuda side, and was an excellent and energetic player for the "Roosters." Luz scored five goals and was their best player late in the year, but could not steer B'nei Yehuda away from the woes of relegation.

Dror Kashtan brought Luz to Hapoel Tel Aviv for the 2001-02 season. He scored five goals, added four assists along the way, and was very influential in midfield. With Ben's help Hapoel ran rampant in Europe and finished second in the Israel League.

2002-03 was a breakthrough season for the playmaker. Kashtan gave Luz his head and he blossomed, scoring 10 goals and making six assists. His form was so good that he was called up to the national squad. Despite Ben's personal success, Hapoel could only manage a third place finish.

The modest Tel Aviv club B'nei Yehuda then signed Luz in an attempt to rebuild their midfield. Hapoel would not re-sign him as he demanded too much money. Ben's new club looked to make last-minute budget cuts, so Luz's future with B'nei Yehuda seemed unclear. However his form in the 2003-04 season was remarkable. The playmaker scored 6 goals and ruled the midsection with an iron fist. Thanks to his leadership, Bnei Yehuda managed a surprisingly high sixth place finish. His quality also led to an international debut in late 2003.

The midfield dynamo is set to lead Bnei Yehuda again in 2004-05. Unfortunately he was troubled by a groin injury and was unable to participate in the early stages of the season.

Origin:
Tel Aviv, Israel

Career Dates:
Player: 1994-present

Position:
Midfield

Career Statistics:
2 caps



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