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Ligat Ha’Al Round 21 February 7-9, 2015

Courtesy Hapoel Tel Aviv Facebook Page

Hapoel Haifa 3-4 Beitar Jerusalem

A cracking match saw both sides slice and dice their way around the pitch producing arguably the most entertaining game this season! It was back and forth throughout this contest with Itzik Cohen opening up the scoring for Beitar while Ma’aran Lala tied it up at one piece in the 36th minute. A few moments later the visitors took the lead on a penalty kick by new acquisition Liviu Antal from Romania, but Lala answered back to knot up the game once more at two a piece. However, 66th minute sub Lidor Cohen broke the dealock once again for Beitar scoring both in the 71st and 84th minutes, while Canadian Tosaint Ricketts had helped Haifa tie up for a few minutes at 3 moments before the game winner!

Maccabi Netanya 3-3 Maccabi Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv started the match without star player Eran Zahavi with coach Pako Ayestaran deciding to rest him prior to an Israel State Cuo match Wednesday night and a crucial league game on Monday night both against Kiryat Shemona. But what we got was absolutely no less than spectacular with Roni Levy’s squad playing aggressively and stud striker Larry Kayode scoring a brace for the yellow and black.

The Tel Aviv defense was flustered all night by the Celtic target, especially Carlos Garcia who was beat time and time again by Kayode forcing him to make error after error. But Maccabi came back with Dor Micha scoring his first goal of the season for Tel Aviv while Eden Ben Basat scored a beauty of a volley to even the game up at 2-2.

Then it was Zahavi who came on and gave the yellow and blue playing in white a 3-2 lead on a fabulous strike from 20m out. But again Kayode caused chaos yet again as a rough and tumble run allowed Diaa Saaba to beat Tel Aviv ‘keeper Juan Pablo and force him into a costly error as the sides split the points.

The draw left Maccabi Tel Aviv with a 2 point lead over 2nd place Kiryat Shemona with a critical matchup between the two clubs to come next Monday night at Bloomfield Stadium.

Hapoel Tel Aviv 2-1 Hapoel Raanana

Tel Aviv coach Eli Cohen celebrated the 93rd minute goal by Matan Ohayon as if it was his first win wit the Reds and it was as his team in turmoil defeated read hot Raanana at Bloomfield Stadium. A Ben Vahava own goal gave Tel Aviv. 1-0 lead but Shoval Gozlan’s equalizer in the second half left the Red faithful shaking their heads as He was just sent packing to Raanana a week ago from Tel Aviv. But Gozlan’s clutch header in injury time gave the Reds the valuable 3-points and victory to move them up in the Ligat Ha’Al table even flirting with the idea of the upper playoffs.

Kiryat Shemona 3-2 Hapoel Petach Tikva

Shimon Abuhetzeira played as if he was a man possessed on his return to Kiryat Shemona his 2 first half goals sparked the Northern City to a 3-2 win over Hapoel Petach Tikva. Abuhetzeira complete a brace by the 25th minute and added an assist on David Manga’s goal to give the 2nd place club a 3-0 lead. However, youngster Shachar Hirsch brought one back for the visitors and Ori Paso cut the lead to 3-2 in the 84th minute but it was not enough to steal a draw in the dying minutes.

Ashdod 2-2 Hapoel Beer Sheva

Shlomi Arbeitman’s brace gave visiting Beer Sheva 2-0 lead which they couldn’t hold on to after a controversial call by referee Guy Berger in the 90th minute. After an Alexander Davidov GOALAZO to cu pt the Beer Sheva lead to 2-1 Berger handed out a 2nd yellow card to Beer Sheva keeper Austine Egida after it seemed that he pulled down an Ashdod player in the box. Ben Biton was also sent to the showers for dissent as Yerro Bello scored from the penalty spot to pull the home side even and share in the points, effectively ending Beer Sheva ‘s title hopes.

Hapoel Akko 0-0 Maccabi Haifa

Another disappointing performance from the Greens in a scoreless draw away at Akko sets another low for the once proud franchise struggling this year. New acquisitions Eliran Atar, Itay Shechter & Abraham Paz didn’t make a difference and change the fortunes of Haifa under Marko Balbul who is still having trouble finding his way as coach. Akko keeper made a number of miraculous saves to keep his side in the game which eventually saw the two clubs split the points.

Maccabi Petach Tikva 1-0 Bnei Sakhnin

Idan Shemesh opened the scoring just 3 minutes into the match as Ran Ben Shimon and Maccabi Petach Tikva didn’t look back taking maximum points rom Sakhnin despite losing Dimitry Dimotiv in the 58th minute. But that didn’t stop Goldenberg from making the game 2-0 and wrapping up the win.