Israel name squad for UK trip

By Simon Griver, August 6, 2009

Israel manager Dror Kashtan has named a 24-man squad for a summer training camp ahead of next week’s friendly international against Northern Ireland in Belfast.

Arriving in the UK on Friday, Hapoel Tel Aviv striker Itay Schechter, who was in the starting line-up for Israel's last game against Greece, has been omitted.

The squad includes Israel's Premier League stars, captain Yossi Benayoun, Tamir Cohen and Tal Ben Haim, who has returned to Man. City after a loan spell with Sunderland.


GB starlet Scott on the move

By Danny Caro, August 6, 2009

Team GB footballer Scott Shulton is joining Blue Square Premier Ebbsfleet United.

A star of the recently concluded Maccabiah Games, Shulton, 19, was set to sign a one-year contract yesterday, after being released by Wycombe Wanderers. He was at Wycombe for seven years following a two-year spell at Watford.

Shulton said: “I see it as a step across rather than down as I will have more of a chance to get regular first-team action. I wanted to stay in full-time football and want to keep improving every day.


Wingate two good for Hendon

By Paul Lerman, August 5, 2009

Wingate & Finchley defeated neighbours Hendon 2-0 in a pre-season on Tuesday night.

Hendon dominated the early stages without actually creating any chances, but it was Wingate & Finchley who took the lead with a fantastic goal. Good work from Ola Williams allowed Leon Nelson to turn and shoot into the left corner.

Hendon's best chance came through a header from James Bent. Towards the end of the half they resorted to a few long range shots although they all failed to hit the target, the best effort coming from Kevin Maclaren.


Comeback kings Haifa through to playoff round

By Danny Caro, August 5, 2009

Maccabi Haifa produced a sensational comeback to book their place in the Champions League playoff round after overturning a three-goal deficit in a 4-3 win over FK Aktobe.

Having drawn 0-0 in Kazakhstan last week, Haifa found themselves 3-0 down inside 15 minutes of the second leg at Kiryat Eliezer.

Former West Ham star Yaniv Katan, the Haifa captain, started the fightback. Eyal Golasa made it 2-3 in the 32nd minute, in a game where Haifa had four players booked.


Mixed bag in Europe

By Danny Caro, July 31, 2009

It was a mixed night for Israeli teams in the Europa Cup.

Three late goals helped Hapoel Tel Aviv earn an impressive 3-1 third qualifying round, win in the away leg against two-time Uefa Cup winners IFK Gothenberg.

Etey Shechter, Samuel Yeboah and Bebars Natcho were the marksmen for Hapoel.

Hapoel coach Eli Gutman said: “What made the win all the more impressive is that Gothenberg are already 16 matches into its Swedish league campaign.”


Haifa half way there

By Simon Griver, July 30, 2009

Maccabi Haifa drew 0-0 in the first leg of the Uefa Champions League third qualifying round away to Kazakh champions Aktobe.

After thumping Glentoran 10-0 on aggregate in the last round, the Greens found the going tougher on Tuesday night.

Yaniv Katan and Vladimer Dvalishvili were thwarted by good saves from Kazakh keeper Andrei Sidelnikov as the Greens had the best of the first half but Aktobe edged the second half to suggest that the Israeli champions are far from assured passage to the knock-out round when the sides meet again next Wednesday at Kiryat Eliezer.


They came, they saw and conquered

July 30, 2009

A first football gold for 48 years was the icing on the cake, according to Darryl Lee, GB head of senior football in Israel.

Goals from Laurence Swerner and Adam Lee earned the Over 45 Masters squad a 2-1 victory over Israel in the final to cap off a memorable tournament in which the Open team took silver, the Over 35s bronze and the Ladies finished fourth.

Lee said: “Medals in all four competitions was probably beyond our expectations when we started but when you look at the professional attitude adopted, it was due reward.


Haifa face Kazakhstan in Uefa tie

By Simon Griver, July 23, 2009

Maccabi Haifa have been drawn to play away to Kazakhstan champions Aktobe next Tuesday night (July 28) in the third qualifying round of the Uefa Champions League.

The Kazakh club agreed to a request from the local Jewish community to switch the game from next Wednesday night which is the eve of Tisha B’Av.

Maccabi were due to play their second leg of the second qualifying round against Glentoran in Belfast on Wednesday night but with a 6-0 lead from last week’s game at Kiryat Eliezer, the Greens are assured passage to the next round.


Wembley debut for Assulin

By Simon Griver, July 23, 2009

Barcelona starlet Gai Assulin has been promoted to the first team squad and could make his debut tonight (Friday) against Spurs in the pre-season Wembley Cup tournament.

The 18-year-old Israeli international is likely to start on the bench against Spurs but could be in the starting line-up on Sunday when the European Champions take on Al Ahly of Egypt at Wembley.

Assulin said: “To be playing alongside so many stars is something I have dreamt about for years. I realise I must work very hard to prove myself.”


Haifa hit Glentoran for six

By Danny Caro in Haifa, July 16, 2009

Five second half goals helped Israeli champions Maccabi Haifa take a giant step into the third qualifying round after they hit Glentoran for six at Kiryat Eliezer Stadium on Wednesday night.

With national coach Dror Kashtan and his assistant Moshe Sinai in the stands, Maccabi were somewhat lacklustre in a tepid first half.

The broke the deadlock close to half time when Lior Refaelov coolly side-footed home from 10 yards.

Haifa must have received a half time grilling as they came out for the second half all guns blazing.