Striker, who made Chelsea debut aged 17, set for boyhood rivals after German failure

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Former Chelsea youngster Ben Sahar is being linked with a move to Maccabi Tel Aviv from Hertha Berlin this week.

On the 6th January 2007, Chelsea unleashed a 17-year-old protégé into the fold against Macclesfield Town in the form of talented Israeli Ben Sahar.

At the time he was considered a hot prospect at the club - with tips of a potential future in the first team for the former Hapoel Tel-Aviv player.

In the end however his time at Stamford Bridge revolved mainly around loan spells elsewhere.

He spent time at QPR, Sheffield Wednesday, Portsmouth and De Graafschap over three years - before leaving for Spanish outfit Espanyol in 2009 - for a fee of £1 million.

But despite a promising start to his Spanish career, including a double against Liverpool in pre-season, he never made the grade in Spain - instead once again spending time out on loan with boyhood club Hapoel Tel Aviv and in France with AJ Auxerre.

After his stint with Espanyol he quickly found a new club, joining Hertha Berlin on a free transfer last summer but once again he has enjoyed a frustrating time with his new club. He featured in just 18 first team games for Hertha in the 2.Bundesliga and has now been told he can leave the club this summer.

He has started the campaign in the second string down in Regionalliga - the fourth tier of German football. Despite starting his campaign with a goal against Auerbach there appears to be very little chance of him making the first team in the German capital this season.

And it appears he could be on the verge of something of a shock move - back to Israel.

Now a move back to his home nation is not a shock. When foreign exports start to struggle abroad there is a trend for them to return home to bring back their best form.

But it is where he is rumoured to be going that is causing ructions - with Maccabi Tel Aviv the destination mooted.

Managed by former Swansea City and Leicester City boss Paolo Sousa, the club has former Manchester United player Jordi Cruyff as their director of football - and they tried to sign Sahar as recently as a couple of months ago.

The deal did not go ahead, but fresh reports appear to indicate a desire to see Sahar playing for Maccabi - the bitter rivals of his boyhood club Hapoel Tel Aviv.

And Sahar will hope any move can see him return to the Israeli national team, for the first time since September 2012.

What are your memories of Ben Sahar at Chelsea?

image: © kudumomo

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