Beitar downs Reineh, Ashdod tops Hadera, Beer Sheva and Netanya tie

Jan 22, 2023 | Football

Beitar Jerusalem blanked Bnei Reineh 2-0 as the yellow-and-black scored a pair of first half goals to seal the win and the 3-points. Ori Dahan headed home a Yarden Shua corner kick to give the visitors a 1-0 in the 15th minute while just three minutes later Danilo Asprilla nodded a Bar Cohen ball behind the Reineh keeper Arik Yanko to take the victory.

“I believe that a game isn’t over until it’s over,” Beitar bench boss Yossi Abukasis said. “There was a big save late in the game and I will only relax once I know it’s done. When it was 2-0 we had plenty of chances to score and finish the game off but we didn’t do it.”

“Our first half was not good as Beitar scored from set pieces and then we had to find a way to get back into the game,” Reineh assistant Oded Kuter said. “We were better in the second half but it wasn’t enough, it’s too bad we started off so poorly.”

Hapoel Beer Sheva and Maccabi Netanya played to an entertaining 2-2 draw down south at Turner Stadium. All four goals cam in the first half as Rotem Hatuel opened the scoring in the 8th minute for the hosts but the ten minutes later Patrick Twumasi found the equalizer. However, Igor Zlatanovic gave the diamond city side the lead in 39th minute but Sagiv Yehezkel quickly evened up the game right before the break as the squads split the points.

“I’m not that content,” Beer Sheva head coach Elyaniv Barda began. “We began the game as best as we had all season long and the opening twenty minutes were just spectacular. But then we gave up a goal which woke us up and that shouldn’t have to happen. We evened up the game but couldn’t score again from the chances that we had.”

“This was overall a good game,” Netanya coach Ron Kozuk said. “The atmosphere was great and i hope we see that at every league game. At the end of the day a point at Turner Stadium is good but I even think we could have won.”

Ashdod scored a pair of second half goals at Hapoel Hadera to record a 2-0 victory and take the points. Ran Ben Shimon’s squad got on the scoreboard early on in the second half as Muhammed Knaan took a Naor Sabag ball and beat Hadera keeper Robi Levkovich for a 1-0 lead in the 52nd minute while Mugees Zakaria added a late injury time strike to seal the win.

“There is good energy going on and the guys won a very tough game,” Ashdod coach Ran Ben Shimon said. “Many teams have lost here and to come into the game after a tough week where we were missing players and some were sick an injured, it was just great to win this contest.”

“We aren’t the only team that hasn’t won lately,” Hadera bench boss Asaf Nimni began. “Take a look at the league it is very even but I am very disappointed in this game. We will have to try and find a way to take points next week against Beitar Jerusalem. The beauty of soccer is that we always have another game next week.”

Hapoel Jerusalem and Hapoel Tel Aviv drew 0-0 at Teddy Stadium as each team took a point as Tel Aviv’s potential new ownership group looked on in the capital city.

“I am disappointed that we didn’t take all 3-points,” Tel Aviv coach Haim Silvas said. “The past two weeks we have been putting things together and we were much more organized in this game. We were in control the entire game even when we didn’t have the ball but we were missing that killer instinct at the end.”

“The league is really tough and every team is fighting for position,” Jerusalem’s Ziv Arie remarked. “Tel Aviv came and were desperate for points. We wanted to win but I am not going to cry over a draw. We have had a hard time scoring and we have to find a way to fix that because one goal would have given us the win.”

Sektzia Nes Ziona and Bnei Sakhnin played to a dry goalless draw at the Moshava Stadium as both teams split the points.

“I’m disappointed overall as we really controlled the pace of play and we had numerous chances,” Nes Ziona coach Shlomi Dura said. “Unfortunately we just couldn’t score. On the other hand we could have lost this game if we had lost our focus for just one moment. I hope things will be better over the course of the upcoming games.”

“I don’t feel good about this game,” Sakhnin’s Kobi Refuah said. “We didn’t make good decisions in the attacking area and perhaps that was due to pressure and lack of confidence. But we need to know how to deal with this and also handle the pressure from our fans.”

Hapoel Haifa slipped by Kiryat Shemona 1-0 on a Guy Mizrachi marker from the top of the box to steal the 3-points just ahead of the final whistle at Sammy Ofer Stadium.

“It’s always great to win in the 90th minute,” a content Roni Levy said. “We had chances to score and we just couldn’t do it but the players deserve all the credit for not just giving up and it paid off for them and the fans with a goal right at the end. This was a very important win against a tough opponent.”

“This is a brutal loss and the better team won this game,” Kiryat Shemona head coach Nir Berkovic began. “We didn’t play from the opening minute all the way until the final whistle and we can’t hide that. This is the squad we have and I am content with it and we will succeed with the players that we have.”

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