Maccabi continues to roll, Maccabi Haifa & Beer Sheva win – Israel Football Matchday 16

Table leaders Maccabi Tel Aviv dropped Hapoel Raanana 2:0 as Itay Shechter scored a first half goal thanks to a Maor Kandil assist while Dor Peretz finished off a fine team play to score the second goal in the victory. Prior to the match a moment of silence was held in memory of Maccabi Tel Aviv and Israel Football great Sheya Glazer who passed away at the age of 91. Shechter put home a Maor Kandil pass in the 38th minute and Peretz beat Raanana keeper Asaf Tzur thanks to a short pass by Eliran Atar in the box to complete wonderful team effort for the second goal.

Meanwhile, Hapoel Beer Sheva squeaked by Ashdod 1:0 on a second half Nigel Hasselbaink goal to take the 3-points in a rough and tumble battle on the pitch. Beer Sheva midfielder Erik Sabo was issued a straight red card in the 25th minute when he choked and threw Amran El Krenawy to the ground after the latter shoved the former in the back reducing the host’s to ten-men. However, the numerical advantage didn’t last long when two minutes later Dudu Bitton pushed Loai Taha to the ground earning a red card of his own as both side’s played the balance of the match shorthanded. Dia Saba sent a through ball to Hasselbaink in the 62nd minute as the Dutchman beat Roei Mishpati to give Beer Sheva the lone goal of the match.

Also, Hapoel Hadera manhandled Maccabi Petah Tikva 3:0 as Freddy-Ange Plumain recorded a brace for the host’s and Eliel Peretz assisted on all three goals. Hadera broke the ice in the 38th minute when Peretz took advantage of a Lidor Cohen mistake, crossed the ball to Plumain who sent it behind keeper Yossi Ginzburg for a 1:0 lead. The host’s doubled their advantage just before halftime when Peretz sent a perfect through ball to Plumain who made it 2:0 after 45 minutes. Hadera added insult to injury when Peretz again played facilitator in the 55th minute this time to Lucio who scored the third goal for Niso Avitan’s side to wrap up a tidy 3:0 victory.

Beitar Jerusalem and Hapoel Haifa drew 1:1 as each side scored a second half goal. Gal Arel found the back of the goal for the Carmel Reds via a penalty kick while Gaetan Varene headed home an Idan Vered cross to split the points.

Marko Balbul won his third match in a row since taking over as Maccabi Haifa’s head coach as the Greens defeated Bnei Yehuda 1:0. Nikita Rukavytsya took an Ernest Mabouka through ball in the 64th minute and put it behind Emilijus Zubas to give the Australian international his second winner in as many games.

Hapoel Tel Aviv dominated an overmatched Bnei Sakhnin 2:0 at the Moshava Stadium. The Reds took a 1:0 lead right before halftime when Caio sent a brilliant free kick to Raz Shlomo who headed the ball into the goal. The host’s doubled their advantage as Ramzi Sfuri put home a gorgeous through ball by Nir Lax in the 89th minute to pick up the win and three points.

Ten-man Maccabi Netanya defeated Kiryat Shmona 1:0 thanks to a first half strike by Fatos Bećiraj as the diamond city side held on to win the contest after American defender Jonathan Bornstein was sent off in the second half. Host Netanya found the back of the goal in the 18th minute when Guy Melamed raced down the right side of the pitch and crossed the ball to Bećiraj who headed it behind Džiugas Bartkus for a 1:0 lead. Bornstein was issued his second yellow card and was sent off in the 57th minute but Netanya was able to hold off the Kiryat Shmona attack to pick up the 3-points and the win. Following the contest, Kiryat Shmona coach Haim Silvas was relieved of his duties and was replaced by youth coach Tomer Kashtan.

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