Maccabi Tel Aviv closes in on championship, Beitar Jerusalem pounds Hapoel Tel Aviv

Apr 27, 2024 | Football

Maccabi Tel Aviv downed Maccabi Bnei Reineh 3-2 as the yellow-and-blue scored all three goals in the first half to close in on the league championship. Osher Davida opened the scoring as he took a misplayed ball by keeper Gad Amos and put it into the goal for an early lead while Gaby Kanichowsky finished off a team play from Eran Zahavi and Dor Peretz to take a 2-0 advantage in the 20th minute. Muhammed Osman pulled back a marker five minutes later, but Peretz found Maccabi’s third goal of the match in first half injury time to grace a 3-1 lead at the break. Kayes Ganem cut the Maccabi lead to 3-2 in the 54th minute but that was as close as the hosts would get as Robbie Keane’s squad closed out the win.

“This was a tough game against a very good team that is very physical,” Keane said. “They made our lives very difficult. We weren’t able to control the ball the way we wanted to but I’m very happy with the win. Sometimes you have to work very hard to win.

“This is another game that gives Reineh more and more credit,” Sharon Mimer said. “I can say that I am very proud of my team and my players, even more than some of the games that we did win. We gave Maccabi some gifts and that gave them confidence but we have shown time and time again that we won’t break.”

Beitar Jerusalem crushed Hapoel Tel Aviv 5-1 to cruise to the big win and take the 3-points. Ori Dahan struck first as he opened the scoring for the yellow-and-black in the 4th minute while 45 minutes later Mayron George doubled the advantage for a 2-0 lead. Yarden Shua added the third marker just five minutes later while Ismaila Toro gave Beitar a 4-0 lead by the 79th minute. Mavis Tchibota pulled back a goal by penalty but Nehoray Dabush put in the visitors 5th goal of the match to polish off the 4-goal victory.

“Terrific, no question about it,” a content Beitar head coach Barak Itzhaki said. “To come in here and win this way it feels great. We took a 1-0 first half lead and we weren’t that great but we put on quite a performance in the second half. the guys are just champs.”

“Really rough feelings,” Hapoel Tel Aviv Head Coach Yossi Abuksis said. “To lose such an important hame the way we did after the first half that was perhaps one of our best and then fall apart in the second half is very disappointing and painful. We will have to figure out a way to deal with this.”

Hapoel Jerusalem downed Hapoel Hadera 2-1 thanks to a pair of quick second half goals to take the 3-points and the win. Ido Levy opened the scoring for visiting Hadera as he headed home Samy Bourard’s cross to give Haim Silvas’s squad a 1-0 lead, but five minutes into the send half Ohad Almagor drew the hosts even. Just two minutes later Dia Lababidi redirected a Cedric Don ball for an own goal which was the eventual winner for Ziv Arie’s team.

“The small changes we made in personnel specifically for Hadera’s system worked out well,” Jerusalem head coach Ziv Arie said. However, most important was how the players reacted positively. I thought that once we took the lead we would be able to have a bit more control but we ended up a couple of injuries.”

“After we took the lead, Jerusalem took some chances and I’m disappointed that we couldn’t take advantage of them,” Hadera Head Coach Haim Silvas said. “This was a wide open game and I knew they would take some risks in the second half as they went forward, but I felt awe would be able to score a second goal with the weapons that we have.”

Maccabi Netanya blanked Maccabi Petach Tikva 2-0 as the diamond city side scored a gaol in each half to take the victory. Netanya grabbed a 1-0 lead after Joel Abu Hana’s ball went off of Obeadia Khattab and into his own goal in the 16th minute while Igor Zlatanovic doubled the advantage in the second half to snatch the 3-points.

“We deserved the win,” Netanya coach Marko Balbul exclaimed. “The result should have been even more than it was but I am very content. We were able to calm down after the State Cup loss which was pretty painful for all of us. But the guys with mentally and physically put on quite the show in terms of the game they played and the result.”

“This was not a good game from us in terms of pressure and energy,” Petach Tikva assistant coach Ben Binyamin said. “We didn’t come into this game properly and we have to see why that was the case. We were weak in the middle and we didn’t do what we needed to do in this game.”

Ashdod slipped by Hapoel Petach Tikva 1-0 was Ezekiel Henty scored the lone goal of the game at the stroke of halftime to give the port city squad the 3-points and the win.

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