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Be'er Sheva Soccer Team Owner: I have Decided to Enter Politics.

By & the Jerusalem Post

Alona Barkat, the owner of Hapoel Be'er Sheva soccer team, announced that she is joining the New Right party. "Dear fans, I stand here with great excitement over my decision to embark on a new path. It is important for me to clarify that I will continue to stand behind the team, its budgets and its contracts.

"I decided to accept the call to enter the political field. To prevent even the appearance of mixing politics and sports, I have decided to transfer management rights to Assi Rahamim. I will continue to transfer budgets and support Hapoel Be'er Sheva," she said.

Barkat is the wife of Eli Barkat, a high-tech entrepreneur and controlling shareholder of the Meitav Dash investment house. He is the brother of former Jerusalem mayor Nir Barkat, who was chosen this week for the Likud list for the next Knesset.

Alona Barkat acquired Hapoel Be'er Sheva in 2007 and over the past three years has made it the leading soccer team in Israel, with three consecutive wins in the State Championship. Among others joining the New Right list are journalist Caroline Glick, Col. (res.) Matan Kahana and social activist Shirley Pinto.

After acquiring Hapoel Be'er Sheva, Barkat invested money and efforts into the youth department, emphasizing educational activities and community connection. Her efforts climaxed in the 2016 national triumph of the soccer team after Be'er Sheva had not won the title in 40 years.

Barkat herself related the difficult decision she had to take in leaving the Hapoel club and fans, but said that she decided to join the New Right because they are a "team of dreamers and believers," but also a team that takes the initiative and goes after its beliefs. She also said that she wants to mirror her work in Be'er Sheva on the national level. "Israel needs social healing. Every child needs to know and believe that they can if they try," she continued, adding that she believed in the cooperation of the entire people, regardless of religious or political affiliation.

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Publication:Israel Faxx
Geographic Code:7ISRA
Date:Feb 8, 2019
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