Jaffa prevailed over Jerusalem 3-2 this past week in a clash of two in-form teams looking to stay in touch with leaders Ra’anana in the Olim League.
The first half was of high quality as the momentum shifted quite a few times before the break. Jaffa put on early pressure with Rotem Elkalay and Nir Hacohen coming close to scoring, but Jerusalem gained confidence and started putting the pressure on until it paid off with a well-worked goal from Mordy Weiler.
Jaffa dug deep and super-sub Sam Silverberg sent a brilliant cross to Josh Bar, who thumped in the equalizer just before half-time. Bar kept up the momentum in the second half to put Jaffa up 2-1.
However, Jerusalem’s dangerous attack managed to pounce on a rare defensive mistake to equalize with another Weiler goal.
Toward the end the orange army pilled on the pressure but to no success until the 85th minute, when Eyal Hoffman picked up the ball just inside the opponents’ half, charged skillfully into their box and slotted the ball in the net to secure all three points for Jaffa.
Nir Madmon, who totally dominated the midfield and didn’t seem to tire at all, was named man of the match.
Modi’in 3, Rainball 2
Modiin recorded its first victory of the season in a closely fought encounter with fellow struggler Rainball.
With both teams clearly up for the game, Rainball wasted no time by scoring from its first corner of the game. The ball was swung in and headed home by new signee Oren Kagan.
Modi’in, playing the fast-paced, sweeping passing game that bought it much success last season, then kept Rainball goalkeeper Ron Cohen busy until they finally drew level on the half-hour mark. Modi’in’s Matan Kroizer was played through, and calmly slotted the ball past the onrushing Cohen.
Modi’in continued to press, and five minutes later Amichai Friedman scored directly from a corner to make it 2-1 to Modi’in going into the break.
Modi’in’s third goal came from Itay Saidoff, who set off on a mazy run, going past five players before scoring in the bottom right corner.
With 10 minutes to go, Rainball’s Kagan intercepted a poor back pass, and he rounded the ‘keeper to make it 3-2. Modi’in, however, regained its composure to see out its first and well-deserved victory of the season.
Modi’in manager Jamie Lazarus was very pleased with his team’s performance. “The boys were fantastic tonight and showed great character to hold on,” he said. “We’ve had a tough season so far and have not got the results for the effort put in. Hopefully this game will be a turning point and we will start our charge up the table.”
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