Maccabi Tel Aviv and Maccabi Haifa split the points in Israeli Classico

Apr 8, 2024 | Football

Maccabi Tel Aviv and Maccabi Haifa drew 1-1 as the yellow-and-blue inched closer to the Israeli league championship with a split of the points.

Eran Zahavi gave Robbie Keane’s squad a 1-0 lead after Gaby Kanichowsky sent a free kick into the box that the greens keeper couldn’t get a hold in the 14th minute, but Anan Khalaili’s 70th minute strike from 16 meters out tied the game up at 1-1 as the two sides took a point a piece for their efforts.

“We were much better in the second half,” Haifa coach Messay Dego said following the game. “The players reacted well to the change in tactics as we spoke about how we may need to switch all week long. I really enjoyed the second half and we just missed out of a goal to take the win. This perhaps was the best half of soccer that we played all season long.”

“We could have protected the ball better,” Maccabi Tel Aviv coach Robbie Keane said. “Maccabi Haifa is one of the top teams and there is a reason why they have some high quality players that are worth a lot of money. Khalaili did what big players do in these situations and nothing is gifted in the game of soccer. You have to work very hard and that is what we are doing.”

Maccabi Bnei Reineh shocked Hapoel Beer Sheva 1-0 as Kayes Ganem scored in the opening minute of the game to help the hosts to the win and the 3-points.

“There was a lack of awareness and perhaps even preparedness,” Beer Sheva Head Coach Elyaniv Barda said. “To give up a goal in the first minute and allow a player to run over 40 meters with the ball right to the box can’t happen. We didn’t react well in the first half to that and we didn’t create enough chances plus our decisions weren’t correct. In the second half we were the only team that was there but they knew how to defend and deserve credit for that.”

“The feelings are no less than the win over Maccabi Haifa,” Reineh Head Coach Sharon Mimer explained. “Beer Sheva is an excellent team and one that is very tough to play against whi have had a terrific second half of the season. I have to take off my hat to the players who came into this game without fear whatsoever.”

Bnei Sakhnin slipped by Hapoel Haifa 2-1 as the Galilee squad came back to score a pair of second half goals and notch the win. Tomer Yosefi opened the game up with a 42nd minute strike to give the Carmel Reds a 1-0 lead ahead of the halftime break but Matanel Tadisa’s 30 meter stole drew the hosts even at 1-1 in the 63rd minute. However, as time wound down Godwin Chinemeren found the winner in the 86th minute to hand Sakhnin all of the points.

“After we scored to take the lead, Sakhnin took control of the game,” Haifa coach Roni Levy said. “They came back with a pair of goals with the first being an impossible one to save and the second one was a marker that we should never have allowed. The second half was one of our poorest of the season. It’s very disappointing and I expected more, I wasn’t calm the entire match.”

“We were in charge in the first half but then we gave up a goal that we just shouldn’t have,” Sakhnin coach Slobodan Drapic said. “In the second half we played very well. We have a magical team and we are in the place where we want to be but we have a tough game coming up at Maccabi Haifa who are a terrific team.”

Matanel Tadisa who scored his first goal spoke about the importance of his strike, “I waited for this goal for a long time. I’m very happy that I across and that we won, we deserved it. I’ve been working very hard at every training session and I’m grabbing every opportunity that I receive with both hands.”

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