The first week of football action in Israel began where the last week of the prior season left off. Maccabi Tel Aviv defeated a pesky Akko squad, Beitar Jerusalem looks like it will be in for another long year and the fun is just beginning with Hapoel Tel Aviv continuing its poor form and Maccabi Haifa looking as sharp as ever! You gotta love Israel Football!
Hapoel Tel Aviv 0-0 Bnei Sakhnin
Ran Ben Shimon’s troops had another difficult outing playing to a dull 0-0 draw with Bnei Sakhnin at Bloomfield Stadium. Hapoel players complained that the visitors came not to play but take a point and they indeed did so.
Hapoel Akko 0-2 Maccabi Tel Aviv
Barak Yitzhaki back in a Maccabi uniform after a year in exile in Cyrpus opened up the season with a 1st minute goal followed by a 7th minute strike by Eran Zehavi, but that was it. Akko kept it close for the next 80+ minutes or so and Yuval Naim’s charges were able to limit Maccabi’s offense to just those two goals. Paulo Sousa said after the match that he has much to think about before the next game against Bnei Yehuda.
Beitar Jerusalem 0-2 Hapoel Beer Sheva
If it were not for Keeper Ariel Harush’s great saves the score line would have been much worse than the 2-0 that Beitar conceded to the visiting Beer Sheva team. Though Harush let in two goals that could have been stopped, if he had not been in between the pipes it could have been a much more lopsided score. Serge Nassar scored in the 18th minute and Tomer Suissa sealed the victory in added time with his first of the campaign for the Sourhern Capitial’s squad. Elyaniv Barda and Maor Bozaglo both back from Belgium made their eagerly anticipated debuts for Beer Sheva.
Bnei Yehuda 1-0 MS Ashdod
Yuro Lamine from Senegal made his arrival at Bnei Yehuda something to remember as he scored the lone goal in the 41st minute to give Dror Kashtan yet another victory and sweet start to the season. Dele Aiyenuga starred in goal in front of 3000 supporters to give his club the 3 points. Ashdod under the direction of Nir Klinger will look to get off on the right foot next week against Maccabi Haifa.
Ramat HaSharon 0-2 Hapoel Haifa
Shlomi Dura did a magnificent job in the offseason with Hapoel Haifa as they got off to a fast start earning an away victory at the surprise of last season Ramat HaSharon. Mahran Lala scored in the 76th minute and Montenegro international Zarko Korac picked up the second goal in the 81st minute for the win. The home side picked up two red cards along the way to help Haifa’s cause, but a win is a win.
Hapoel Raanana 1-0 Maccabi Petach Tikva
The Ligat Ha’Al newcomer made good on their promise to be competitive as Raanana took 3 points from the other new arrival from the Leumit League Maccabi Petach Tikva. Sham Mamadou scored the winner in the 14th minute as Asi Baldot starred for the home side.