MODIIN 4 REAL JERUSALEM 2
Modiin showed great character to come from two goals down to beat Real Jerusalem 4-2, with Omri Encaoua (2), Lanre Adeyinka and Beni Sragi steering them home.
There was little to separate the teams in what was a good footballing encouter. Real started with more purpose as they capitalised on a long ball over the top, with Nati Hason finishing.
Modiin began to play their passing game, but Real were having none of it and were pressing Modiin all over the pitch. After 20 mintues, Real scored again with another Hason strike to take a deserved 2-0 lead.
The Modiin management knew they had to change their strategy and made some first-half substitutions. With 10 minutes to go of the first half, Itai Saidoff went on a run and was bought down in the area. Captain Omri Encaoua coolly slotted home the resulting penalty and the comeback was on.
Modiin knew they had to raise their game in the second half, but this was proving difficult as Real parked the proverbial bus, reverting to a 7-0-3 formation. Modiin threw on striker Lanre Adeyinka to mix things up and within five minutes, Adeyinka had drawn Modiin level with a purposeful strike from 10 yards.
Five minutes later, Adeyinka was fouled in the area in an off-the-ball incident which resulted in a red card for the Real defender. Encaoua having already scored from the spot, sent the keeper the wrong way to make it 3-2 to Modiin.
Modiin continued to press and they caught Real on the counter-attack several times. Real keeper Francisco Enrique Salgado Jara was in fine form, making some acrobatic saves and doing his best to keep his team in the game. But with five minutes to go, a mix-up in the Real defence allowed Beni Sragi to nip in and score into an empty net.
Modiin co-managers Jamie Lazarus and David Bruce were delighted for their team's efforts. "Tonight was a massive result for the lads," said Lazarus. "They showed great character to come back from 2-0 down.
Bruce added: "Real were a very difficult team to break down, but in the end our quality shone through."