Immobile ends Israel's World Cup qualification hopes

Israel's hopes of qualifying for next year's World Cup finals in Russia are over after they suffered their fourth consecutive loss of the qualifying campaign, going down 1-0 against Italy on Tuesday night.


Beaten 1-0 at home to Macedonia three days ago, Elisha Levy's troops were in stubborn mood against an Italian team beaten 3-0 by Spain at the weekend.

After a goalless first half, the match came to life in the 55th minute when Ciro Immobile headed a right-wing cross from Candreva into the roof of the net at the Stadio Città del Tricolore.

Italy dominated, having 18 shots, with seven on target, compared to Israel's four.

The defeat ended Israel's slim hopes of finishing second in Group G. There was, however, one highlight for visitors which saw Yossi Benayoun earn his 100th cap for his country, coming off the bench with 21 minutes remaining.

Israel return to again on October 6 when they visit Liechtenstein.

ITALY: Buffon (capt), Conti (sub: Zappacosta 49), Darmian, Candreva (sub: Bernadeschi 87), Verrati (sub: Montolivio 89), Belotti, Insigne, Immobile, Astori, Barzagli, De Rossi. 

ISRAEL: Harush, Ben Haim (capt), Melikson (sub: Ben Chaim 62), Natcho, A. Cohen (sub: Einbinder 77), Refaelov, Shechter (sub: Benayoun), Keltjens, Tzedek, Davidaza, Kabha.


1. Spain Pl. 8, W. 7, Pts. 22

2. Italy Pl. 8, W. 6, Pts. 19

3. Albania Pl. 8, W. 4, Pts. 13

4. FYR Macedonia Pl. 8, W. 2, Pts. 10

5. Israel Pl. 8, W. 3, Pts. 9

6. Liechtenstein Pl. 8, W. 8, Pts. 0

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