Maccabi Haifa has been a team that has given their supporters fits all season long. From struggling under Serbian coach Alexander Stanoyavich to making the upper playoffs with Marko Balbul, it’s been back to futility as the Greens drop yet another game and lose a point to 4th place Beitar Jerusalem. Rodgers Kola gave the hosts the valuable goal that moved Kiryat Shemona into a 2nd place tie on points with Hapoel Beer Sheva and Barak Bachar’s side have definitely not ruled out finishing the year behind table leaders Maccabi Tel Aviv.
Petach Tikva got a big break in the first half as Tel Aviv defender Omri Ben Harush was shown his second yellow which resulted in a red card and penalty kick for the hosts. Roie Dayan converted to give Petach Tikva a shock 1-0 lead over the table leaders and back to back champions. However just minutes later Maccabi Tel Aviv’s star Eran Zahavi scored from the penalty spot as well to give the 10-man visitors a 1-1 draw at the Moshava stadium.
Petach Tikva coach Menachem Koretzky was run out of town by Beitar Jerusalem fans earlier in the year. Unfortunately his current supporters are dig the same as he needed a place escort to leave the stadium after a 2-0 loss to relegation rival Akko. Branislav Jovanovic opened the scoring for Shlomi Dura’s club and Edi Gutliv put the game out of reach in the 86th minute. The win moves Akko out of the basement for the first time since around 11 as things are looking very good for the port city side.
Ashdod again couldn’t muster up a goal or a win but the point at least keeps them out of the relegation zone for now in 11th place with 29 points. Haifa on the other hand is mired in 2nd to last place with 27 points, one more than Hapoel Petach Tikva.
A crazy game in Netanya that Bnei Sakhnin able to pull out a victory with a 90th minute goal to steal the 3-points. Brazilian Diogo Kachuba scored in the dying seconds as Muhamed Ghadir & Jaabar Ataa with his first league goal rounded out the scoring for the visitors. Eran Levy brought Netanya back into the game with penalty goal but his 55th minute penalty miss would prove costly as Larry Kayode also scored for the home side in a match that the home team lost by 1-goal.
Hapoel Raanana 2-2 Hapoel Tel Aviv
Hapoel Tel Aviv almost lost to Raanana for the first time in the club’s existence, but captain Shai Abutbul bright his side back in the 2nd half to split the points. Raanana opened the scoring with Shoval Gozlan and Babayev giving the hosts a 2-0 lead before halftime. However, a strange free kick strike by Abutbul followed by another free kick that was slammed home by Izuegbu Abonima Boniface in the 86th minute saved Eli Cohen’s side from a loss.