Two old rivals, England FC and Jerusalem, locked horns again in Tel Aviv on Saturday night, as England pulled away to prevail 3-1.
The first half was a scrappy affair with both teams feeling each other out. Gav Cohen and Yehuda Korman were dominating for Jerusalem in the center of the park and that dominance almost paid off. A cross from the right-hand side was flicked on by the ever-dangerous Moshe Lewis, but his shot rebounded back off the bar and the follow-up from the Jerusalem winger was held onto by Roy Merrom in the England goal.
The second half saw a new determination from England and the players came out the blocks flying. A lovely floated corner from Yonni Shelmedrine was attacked by three England players, but it was Aviv “Beja” Bejerano that got there first and his header rifled into the roof of the net.
England dominated possession, but against the run of play a quick free kick saw Moshe Lewis put through and he expertly finished with the outside of his boot to level things up after 60 minutes.
Jerusalem almost took the lead after the exceptional Gav Cohen broke through from midfield and burst into the area. Under pressure from Yoni Sidi he was driven wide and his shot flew over the bar.
That was the last scare England needed to shock them back into action. Some superb hold-up play from Zak White at the edge of the Jerusalem area saw him play a delightful chipped-through ball over the left back’s head to Motti Colman. Colman lifted the ball back across the goal and Eli Israeli came steaming in the back post. His scuffed shot hit the ground and bounced up over the goalkeeper and Dan Kosky, who had returned to the line to help, before hitting the back of the net to make it 2-1 England.
As the game opened up, England unleashed their two new Brazilian superstars into the fray. Their impact was almost instant.
A quick breakaway starting with Omer Peleg, out to Shelmedrine who then released Flavio, the younger of the two brothers, down the right-hand side. His cross was driven at pace, and Roy Ben Zihou leaped like a salmon to head the ball back across the goalie. Daniel Boestra in the Jerusalem net managed to scramble to the far post and keep the ball out, but following up was Marcio to turn the ball in for a debut goal.
With the clock ticking, Jerusalem threw more men forward, but when Colman won the ball off Korman in the center of the park, he rolled back the years with a barnstorming run that saw him go past two men before getting to the goal line. His left-footed pull back found Flavio at the edge of the box. Killing the ball with his first touch, he then smashed it low and hard into the corner of the net. The fourth goal was the last kick of the game, with England going off worthy winners.
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