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Round 24 Israel Football League Ligat Ha’Al

Maccabi Tel Aviv 1-0 Ramat HaSharon
Eliran Atar did it again! Atar scored yet another goal and propelled Maccabi Tel Aviv to another victory and what looks to be a stranglehold on the Israel Football League this season. Maccabi’s record moves to 17 wins, 2 draws and 5 losses and places them 8 points ahead of the 2nd place team Maccabi Haifa in the standings. Ramat HaSharon put up a valiant fight and played a bunker style of game trying to capitalize on odd man breaks down the pitch, but it was not to be on this night.

Hapoel Beer Sheva 1-2 Hapoel Tel Aviv
Under new coach Freddy David, Hapoel Tel Aviv pulled out a controversial victory in Israel’s southern city of Beer Sheva. A poor call by referee Eitan Shmuelivitch gave Hapoel Tel Aviv a questionable penalty which Omer Damari converted in the 76th minute for the win. Beer Sheva gifted Tel Aviv a lead on an own goal in the 11th minute and then equalized the match at 1 with a Dovev Gabbay goal in the 69th minute.

Maccabi Haifa 4-1 Beitar Jerusalem
Beitar Jerusalem continued its poor form by losing for the 2nd week in a row at Kiryat Eliezer Stadium in Haifa and have only picked up 1 point in the past 5 matches. Haifa on the other hand continued its dominant play and try to stay within striking distance of league leaders Maccabi Tel Aviv. All 5 goals were scored by Haifa players, Yaniv Katan with a beauty of a strike, Wiam Amasha with a brace, the 2nd goal being a penalty and Alon Turgeman slotted home the last goal. Andriy Pyliavskyi who was loaned by Haifa to Beitar last season scored an own goal. Zaur Sadayev one of the Chechnyan players made his debut for Jerusalem as Eli Cohen’s magic has seemed to run out.

M.S. Ashdod 2-3 Hapoel Ramat Gan
Ashdod continued it’s freefall with another shock home loss to Hapoel Ramat Gan. Omer Buksenbaum led the visitors with his game winning goal in the 73rd minute. Michael Zandberg & Israel Zaguri also added goals for Ramat Gan as the victory moved them into 10th place. Strong play by David Manga who has been superb all year and who should be looked at by scouts across Europe was the catalyst for the Ramat Gan attack. Dimitar Makriev & Nir Biton scored for Ashdod who have not won since beating Maccabi Tel Aviv 1-0 on January 19th.

Hapoel Akko 1-3 Hapoel Haifa
Hapoel Haifa continued it’s good play recording points in the last 3 matches and winning its first away match of the season by defeating Akko on the help of two Akko own goals. Vladimir Gluscevic scored his 7th goal of the season for the victors and Guy Tzarfati was the key playmaker for Haifa in their win. Serbian Branislav Jovanovic scored for last place Akko.

Ironi Kiryat Shemona 2-0 Bnei Yehuda

Reigning champions Kiryat Shemona continued it’s strong play of late and moved into 4th place with a their 2-0 victory over Bnei Yehuda. Embattled midfielder Dan Einbinder scored two goals and earned Man of the Match honors for the Northern City.

Maccabi Netanya 0-0 Bnei Sakhnin
Not much to say about this scoreless draw. No offense or real chances by either team in a rather dull affair.