MGBSFL PREMIER DIVISION
HENDON UNITED SPORTS CLUB A 2 NORTH LONDON RAIDERS A 2
Dan Shafron insists North London Raiders A will have a big say in the destiny of this season's MGBSFL Premier Division title after halting Hendon's title charge after a four-goal thriller at Hadley FC.
The JC Match of the Day finished honours even in front of the cameras as Hendon lost ground on leaders Hendon in a game they led twice against the defending champions.
Avi Korman (pen) and Rocky Spitzer had twice put Hendon in front, but on each occasion NLR hit back through Dave Cohen and top-scorer Liron Mannie, whose 60th-minute header from a Sam Lewis free-kick made it 2-2.
NLR manager Dan Shafron told JC Sport: "I think a draw was probably a fair result. I would say that we had the better possession but didn’t create too many clear-cut chances whereas Hendon probably felt they could have nicked it late on when we were pushing for a winner and they caught us on the break a couple of times.
"Overall, it was a very well contested game of football. On any other day, you’d say a point away to Hendon is a good result but in the situation we’re in, we did need to take all three points and it wasn’t to be.
"Hendon are an excellent side, very well-drilled and have an incredible work ethic. The two teams always produce high-tempo, exciting games and this was no exception.
"The game was a great advert for the Maccabi League, from the players to the way it was officiated by Andy. A point suits Hendon more than it does us but we will continue to fight and ensure that we have a big say in the outcome of the league."
Frustrated Hendon boss David Garbacz praised defenders Yehuda Korman and Simon Peterman for impressive performances and told JC Sport: "We came off the pitch today feeling that two points had been dropped. We led twice in the match only to be pegged back both times by a determined Raiders team but felt that in the latter stages of the match we had the better chances to clinch it.
"Overall though this was a great game, on a superb pitch refereed very well between two fine teams. The football played was a credit to the league with both teams going for the win and in the cold light of day we should be satisfied to have taken four points off Raiders in the two league games this year.
"I think it is just about a better result for us rather than them - we remain unbeaten and one of our main rivals have an awful lot of catching up to do.
"Credit to both teams for a totally committed yet totally fair excellent match - we'd have loved the win but we accept the point gracefully and move on confident that our title hopes have not been dented too much."