Maccabi League grilled by Turkish League

By Danny Caro, February 22, 2011
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The Maccabi League Rep Team suffered a comprehensive 5-0 defeat against the Turkish Football Federation at Wingate & Finchley on Tuesday night.

Having won their London Inter-League Cup opener 3-0 against the North London League earlier this month, Maccabi manager made two changes to the team with North London Raiders’ Adam Joselyn replacing the injured Ben Sollosi while Lewis Walker took over from Redbridge Jewish Care teammate Steve Summers in attack.

Right from the start, Maccabi looked unbalanced with big gaps between their midfield and attack. Their passing and touch was sloppy and keeper Dan Lee was forced into an acrobatic saved to keep out a dipping effort from 20 yards.

Maccabi momentarily sprung to life with the industrious Daran Bern showing great control to spin off his marker and force the Turkish keeper to tip his drive behind for a corner. A whipped in delivery from captain Alex Levack was headed over by Kyle Bentwood.

The visitors forged ahead with a soft goal on 18 minutes. Striker Adrian was given time and space to turn and shoot past Lee at his near post.

The Turks doubled their advantage seven minutes later when the unmarked Kori glanced home an inswinging free-kick past a flat-footed Maccabi defence.

Walker had a chance to halve the deficit. With just the keeper to beat, he was denied by a excellent save and was unable to tuck home the rebound after being muscled out by the Turkish defence.

The Turkish League opened up a 3-0 lead after 35 minutes with Adrian rising unmarked to plant a firm header into the top corner without a Maccabi defender in sight.

Things did not improve for Maccabi in the second half. Alex Taylor and Jacob Gold were brought on to replace Adam Joselyn and Walker but their evening got worse when Levack limped off injured and with Hendon’s Josh Bentley coming on.

But they were unable to stem the flow of goals as the Turks started to toy with them.

Maccabi were forced to play the last 28 minutes with 10 men after Bern hobbled off.

To add insult to injury, the Turks scored twice more in the last 10 minutes. Daniel went round Lee to place the ball into an empty net for the fourth, while Adrian completed his hat-trick from the penalty spot after a trip in the area.

Maccabi still have a chance of reaching the final. They have one round robin match remaining, against the Cypriot League but they were a pale shadow of the team who performed so well a couple of weeks ago.

Rep Team manager Danny Berg told JC Sport: “It’s been a night to forget. Our big players didn’t turn up.

“I’ve seen better Turkish teams but if we win our last match we’re still in it.”

Maccabi League: Dan Lee, Motti Colman, Alex Levack (capt – sub: Josh Bentley 60), Kyle Bentwood, Alex Osper, Dean Nyman, Adam Joselyn (sub: Alex Taylor 40), Paul Babai, Josh Lipman, Daran Bern, Lewis Walker (sub; Jacob Gold 55). Subs not used: Dan Cohen, Jamie Wolfson

Last updated: 10:50am, February 23 2011