Maccabi beat Netanya 5-1

Maccabi Tel Aviv arrived at the Netanya stadium for the ONE ZERO League MD22 against local side Maccabi Netanya in a bid to return to winning ways and record the 15th victory of the season.

Last week’s 1-1 draw against Bnei Sakhnin at Bloomfield kept Robbie Keane’s charges in 2nd place with 46 points. The 1-1 draw in the Haifa derby on Sunday, between fourth place Hapoel and leaders Maccabi Haifa – now gives Maccabi a chance to cancel the three point gap from the top.

Keane made three changes from last week as Enric Saborit was handed the captain’s armband partnering Raz Shlomo at the heart of defense. Roy Revivo replaced Ofir Davidzada at left back with Avishai Cohen completing the defensive line in front of goalkeeper Roy Mishpati. Joris van Overeem were assigned to Maccabi’s engine room with Ido Shahar stepping in for Dor Peretz to complete the midfield trio. Milson kept his place on the left wing while Yonas Malede who scored Maccabi’s late equalizer against Sakhnin was handed a first start against his former club on the opposite flank. Dor Turgeman spearheaded the attack as Era Zahavi waited for his chance on the bench.
Alongside Zahavi, Peretz, and Davdzada, Keane, named Daniel Tenenbaum, Yonatan Cohen, Matan Baltaxa, Kiko Bondoso, Eden Kartzev and Osher Davida.

Prior to kickoff Netanya held a ceremony for their three former players: Raz Shlomo, Yonas Malede and Eden Kartzev honoring their services for the club.

First Half

The hosts began the match on the front foot placing pressure on Maccabi’s goal right from the start. Netanya pressed high in the opening couple of minutes as Guy Mizrahi tested Roy Mishpati with a powerful half volley from the edge of the area which was turned by the Maccabi keeper over his crossbar. Maccabi gradually began to dominate the game as Joris van Overeem, Gabi Kanichowsky and Ido Shahar in the middle bossed their Netanya counterparts. In the 14th minute Shahar was sent to the byline before his cross appeared to have struck the arm of a Netanya defender. Referee Aviad Shiloah was called by the VAR to the screen and awarded a penalty. Shahar stepped up to take the spot kick, kept his calm, sent the keeper the wrong way to roll in the penalty for his debut league goal this season. Maccabi came close to double their lead on 21 after Yonas Malede and Dor Turgeman combined well before van Overeem blasted his shot high over the bar.

Two minutes after the half hour mark Mishpati was at full stretch to turn a Maxim Plakuschenko powerful low drive for a corner. The resulting corner led to a mix-up in the area as Netanya’s claims for a handball in Maccabi’s penalty area were dismissed by VAR. In the 38th minute Turgeman was brought down by a Netanya defender some 25 meters away from goal. Roy Revivo’s left foot free kick was too powerful and too accurate for Netanya’s keeper Tomer Zarafati who picked the second ball out of his net.

On the stroke of halftime Netanya cut the deficit as Guy Mizrahi was given the time and space to send a square ball which was flicked in by Itamar Shviro to make it 2-1.

Second Half

Keane made one change at halftime as Ofir Davidzada replaced Avishai Cohen for the restart with Revivo switching to right-back. In the 53rd minute Mishpati was quick off his line to block Mizrahi’s effort after the former Maccabi full-back was sent clear through.

Keane made a second change in the 58th minute as Malede bowed out and was replaced by Osher Davida’s fresh pair of legs.

In the 62nd minute Maccabi restored the two-goal lead as Milson carved Netanya’s defense open with a through ball to Shahar who turned provider as his square ball allowed Kanichowsky to side foot home.

Eran Zahavi was introduced for Turgeman in the 69th minute as the veteran marksman was given 20 minutes to make a mark. In the 73rd minute Milson took the match beyond Netanya’s reach as the Angolan winger turned outside the area and snapped a powerful shot that rocketed past Zarfati to make it 4-1.

Keane made another double change as Milson and van Overeem came off to a standing ovation as they were replaced by Dor Peretz and Eden Kartzev.

Peretz could have made an immediate impact as he found Davida with an accurate square ball but the pacy winger couldn’t keep his close range effort down. Seconds after the fourth official indicated five minutes of added time Netanya were awarded a free kick which was taken by Liran Rotman who rattled Mishpati’s crossbar.

A minute later at the opposite end Zahavi put Shahar through and the diminutive midfielder slipped it past Zarfati for his second on the night Maccabi’s fifth.