As photographs were released yesterday of the squad, getting back into contact training, there was one thing that many fans couldn’t help but notice and question.
That was why Hatem Abd Elhamed had looked to have changed his squad number from 33 to 44. It left many confused as to why he had done this, or was it maybe just because his brand new Adidas training kit, wasn’t ready yet?
Speaking on the club’s official twitter, Elhamed has revealed the reasoning behind this sudden change and why he decided to do it.
“Number 44 is my favourite. I achieved many good things with it in my career and won my first league trophy with my old team, with this number.”
This does clear up all the confusion around this sudden change, as the number has clearly either just become available or been made clear to the Israeli that it is free.
Elhamed picked up the number 33, when he joined from Hapoel Beer Sheeva last summer transfer window. At the time, many fans were a it unsure around the signing as the right-back was an unknown quantity.
However, he was given a chance to shine at the start of last season and took. He proved to be an excellent addition to the side, becoming a first-team regular during this time.
Of course, he famously had his injury problems, which all but called his season to a halt, when he picked up a groin injury away to Lazio in the Europa League.
The majority of fans will be looking forward to seeing the right-back getting into action once again. The only ones who may be a bit frustrated by his decision to change number, will be those who have previously purchased a replica strip, with his name and number on the back.