Photo: Oren Ben Hakoon / POOL
Maccabi Netanya will not be fined by the director of the football leagues. The intervention of the Minister of Culture and Sports, Hili Trooper, following the request of MK Bezalel Smutrich, chairman of the National Union, led to the cancellation of the fine imposed on the Maccabi Netanya team when it refused to allow the broadcasting franchisee to interview her player.
As you may recall, a little over a month ago, the director of the football leagues announced that he would impose a fine on the Maccabi Netanya football club, due to their refusal to allow the broadcasting franchisee to interview their player. The reason for Netanya’s refusal to interview the player after the game that took place during Shabbat was due to the fact that the player was a Shabbat keeper and a tradition, something she warned about before the game when she said that it would not be possible to interview Shabbat players.
The owner of Maccabi Netanya, Eyal Segal, published an angry post in which he claimed that instead of worrying about him and the league teams, the league administration tends to act in favor of the broadcasting franchisee, who said he acted deliberately and asked to interview the Shabbat player.
The post angered the chairman of the National Union, MK Smutrich, who came out and not for the first time about the football leaders’ contempt for the Sabbath-keepers and the tradition and exclusion of those from the popular industry.
Today (Thursday) a little more than a month after MK Smutrich’s appeal to the Minister of Culture and Sports, Hili Troper, who will intervene in the matter, the struggle was successful and Maccabi Netanya will not be fined for its desire to honor its Shabbat and tradition players.
MK Smutrich welcomed the decision not to fine Netanya for its desire not to desecrate Shabbat and said: “First, this is the place to praise the Minister of Culture and Sports for his intervention and prevention of the absurdity of a fine for players or a team seeking to avoid desecrating Shabbat.
About a month ago, I turned to Minister Trooper and asked for his intervention with the intention of the league director to fine Maccabi Netanya following a player asking not to be interviewed on Saturday after a football game. “I am happy that, following the Minister’s intervention, the fine will not be imposed.”
“The State of Israel is a Jewish state, restoring an iron-clad property of the Jewish people that was inherited to the whole world and it is inconceivable that an actor who sought to maintain his faith would be harmed in that name.”
MK Smutrich said he would continue to fight for football fans and players who want to enjoy such a popular sport without harming Jewish values and their faith and respect for the Sabbath.
“In the State of Israel, thousands of fans and football players are Sabbath-keepers and traditions and harming them is unacceptable.