Maccabi Tel Aviv easily disposed of Hapoel Beer Sheva 2-0 in the first leg of the Champions Cup held at Teddy Stadium as the southern Reds will have to play their home games for the time being in the capital city due to issues with the roof at Turner Stadium in Beer Sheva. The yellow-and-blue out played the hosts for the full 90 minutes as striker Nick Blackman scored a pair of goals which will carry over to Thursday night’s second leg at Bloomfield Stadium.
Blackman found the back of the goal in the 8th minute in the box as he pounced on Eylon Almog’s attempt to give Maccabi an early 1-0 lead. less than a half hour later youngster Eduardo Guerrero streaked down the flank and sent a pinpoint perfect call that Blackman headed home for a 2-0 advantage ahead of the break. Itamar Shviro was handed a red card in the 56th minute as Yossi Abuksis’s squad played the balance of the game with only ten men. However, the visitors couldn’t capitalize on the opportunities by Dor Peretz and Yonatan Cohen as interim coach Patrick van Leeuwen’s side took the two goal victory into the return leg.
Maccabi Tel Aviv was drawn to face Riga at home in Champions League first round qualifying action in a match that will take place on either August 18th or 19th. Should the yellow-and-blue pass that test they will play the winner of FC Flora Tallinn from Estonia and FK Suduva of Lithuania. Hapoel Beer Sheva will host Dinamo Batumi from in Europa League qualifying.
Hapoel Tel Aviv slipped by Ashdod 1-0 at the port city thanks to a first half penalty goal by Omri Altman. Gil Cohen pulled down Altman as he made his way towards the goal in the 24th minute as the attacking midfielder then stepped up to put the ball past a helpless Roie Mishpati for the lone strike of the game.
Maccabi Netanya defeated Hapoel Kfar Saba 3-0 to give brand new head coach Raymond Atteveld his first win with the club. Hen Ezra used his left foot to slot home the opening strike thanks to a Yonas Malede cross. Malede was instrumental in Netanya’s second goal as he sent a through ball to Aviv Avraham who scored to give the hosts a 2-0 lead in the 50th minute. Thirty minutes later Gabi Kanichowsky was yanked down in the box and Malede who had set up the first two goals scored a perfect spot kick from 11 meters to wrap up an all-star performance and the win.
The Barak Bachar era at Maccabi Haifa started off on the right foot as the Greens downed Kiryat Shemona 1-0 in the northern capital. Ofri Arad’s 9th minute header thanks to Muahammed Awad pass gave Haifa the win and the 3 points. Maccabi Haifa was also drawn to face FK Zeljeznicar from Bosnia at home in Europa League qualifying.
Beitar Jerusalem and Bnei Yehuda played to a goalless draw as Levi Garcia picked up what looked to be a hamstring injury for the yellow-and-black leading to some serious concern within the club. Beitar Jerusalem were drawn against Teuta Durrës and will travel to Albania for Europa League qualifying.
Bnei Sakhnin made sure that their Israel Premier comeback was a successful one as they blanked Hapoel Haifa 2-0. In their first game back in the top flight after spending last season in the Leumit League, Eldad Shavit’s squad used a 3rd minute Ataa Jabar goal and a gorgeous Ihab Shami second half volley from 25 meters out to take the 3 points.
Maccabi Petah Tikva and Hapoel Hadera played to a 1-1 draw at the Moshava Stadium. Roie Ronen gave Petah Tikva a 1-0 lead in the 27th minute as he jumped on an error by the Hadera defense to give his squad the lead. However, less than a minute later Asi Guma heeded home the equalizer as the squads split the points.