OLIM CUP QUARTER-FINAL
ENGLAND FC 3 RA'ANANA 2
A strike from Yuval Ruppin’s helped England FC made their way to the semi-final of the Olim Cup after a hard-fought 3-2 victory over Ra’anana.
With both teams out of the running for the league title, there was a huge emphasis on both sides to win at all costs and the intensity of the match itself reflected that.
England FC made the better start and were rewarded for their efforts when central midfielder, Amitai Backar, scored a screamer from 40 yards on the half volley and into the top corner.
However, their lead didn’t last long and Ra’anana’s front-man, Aviad Ben Meir, managed to wriggle away from England’s defence to score two goals shortly after.
Yet, the teams went into the half time break all square, after a goal-mouth scramble ended with Omri Hamama to make it 2-2, just before half time.
Second-half substitute for England, Motti Colman, who had come straight from the airport, was instrumental in midfield after the break and it was his cross that led to Ruppin’s winner midway through the second half.
England had to battle hard to earn their victory though and a Ra’anana onslaught followed. Yet, the England defence stood firm and goal-saving tackles from the likes of manager Terry Newman, Sam Sank, Omer Peleg and Omri Elani ensured the win.
England will now face either Modi’in or Aviv in the semi-finals.
Brief profile of teams still in the cup
Aviv City - feature a number of ex-pros from Africa, Europe and Israel, who have played at the highest level in their respective former countries. Former cup winners.
Bambi - The only predominant Israeli team in the league. Having a phenomenal season, all but mathematically won the league, and favourites to be the first team to win the league and cup double. The team to beat.
England FC - A mixture of Anglo olim and Israelis. A number of noted past MSFL stars now living in Israel. Defending league champions, one of the best teams to grace the wold of Olim football. Alongside Jerusalem, have won the most trophies. (Founder members of Olim League)
Jerusalem - Predominantly English side, with a few Dutch thrown in. Strong ex-Hendon Utd (MSFL) core, as well as other past MSFL players. Former league champions and current cup holders, looking to win silverware for an unprecedented third year in a row. Alongside England FC, have won the most trophies. (Founder members of Olim League)
Modi'in - One of the toughest teams in the league this season. On their day, can and have beaten anyone. Still awaiting their maiden trophy