On Sunday night Maccabi thrashed Hapoel Haifa 6-2 to open up a four point lead at the top of the Israeli Premier League table
After Hapoel Tel Aviv lost to Bnei Yehuda on Saturday, Maccabi went into their match against Hapoel Haifa Sunday night knowing just a win would put them four points clear at the top of the table. Just a win? What a win! Just two minutes into the match and it was clear that all bets were off: Dor Micha played a long ball right on to the foot of Moshe Lugassi down the left flank who crossed it in perfectly to Moanes Dabour who beat Hapoel keeper Kale Dreshler with his first touch of the game – a lightning quick goal for the Yellows courtesy of graduates of the club's youth department. Lugassi, standing in for yellow-carded Gal Alberman, carried on the attack in the 14th minute with a hard drive that just sailed over the net of keeper Kale. Seven minutes later Moanes Dabour got his brace, exploiting an error in Hapoel's defence and handily rolling the ball past Kale into the corner of the net to double Maccabi's advantage. The first half continued to see Maccabi in attacking mode, with Eliran Atar on 24 minutes and Maharan Radi on 26 seeing the best chances go astray from inside the penalty area. And then forty minutes into the match, on one of Hapoel Haifa's rare forays into the Yellow half of the pitch, Gal Arel lifted a precision ball into the area and Yuval Avidor got it into the net to put Haifa back in the match at 2-1.
The second half opened much like the first, raining yellow goals. With just six minutes gone Maharan Radi hooked onto a cross from Dor Micha, nudging in Maccabi's third. But Maccabi weren't resting on their laurels and with 65 minutes played Yoav Ziv latched on to a back heel from Eliran Atar and smashed a pin-point drive into the net. Three minutes later Hapoel Haifa struck back to narrow the advantage, with Ran Abukarat taking advantage of a scramble in front of Maccabi's goal. But the Yellows weren't finished quite yet. With fifteen minutes left substitute Gael Margoles scored Maccabi's fifth, his maiden goal since joining the first team from the youth department. And what a grand finale! Four minutes from time Skipper Sheran Yeini pounced on a ball 20 yards out and sent it flying into the net off the top of the crossbar. Magnificent!
Next week Maccabi head north to face champions Ironi Kiryat Shmone.