(photo credit: Asaf Kliger)
Maccabi Haifa failed to return to the top of the Premier League standings on
Sunday night, drawing 0-0 with Betar Jerusalem at a rainy Teddy
Haifa needed all three points to leapfrog Hapoel Tel Aviv back
into first position, but Elisha Levy’s men created very few chances in Jerusalem
and Roni Levy’s Betar held on for a moraleboosting point.
“We are never
pleased with a draw,” said Haifa coach Levy, whose team has won just once in its
past three contests.
“We created enough chances to finish the match, but
we couldn’t win.
Betar closed us down and gave us a real tough
Despite Sunday’s disappointment, Haifa will be expecting to move
into first place when it hosts Bnei Sakhnin this coming Saturday, with Hapoel
Tel Aviv not facing Maccabi Tel Aviv in the local derby until Sunday.
expect to see the team play better in the future, but we have set a good
foundation,” said Betar coach Roni Levy, who was pleased with Sunday’s point
after last week’s win at Hapoel Beersheba in his debut on the sideline for the
“I would like us to improve over the long term. My
first goal was to settle the team and I have achieved that.
You can see
how committed the players are and that pleases me. I would eventually like to
see our team’s play improve and to see more creativity from the
Betar hosts Bnei Yehuda in an important bottom-half-of-the-table
encounter on Saturday.
Haifa controlled the possession at the start of
Sunday’s match, but Roni Levy’s men completely neutralized the visitors and
Ariel Harush’s goal was rarely threatened.
The first real chance of the
match only arrived five minutes before the break, and it was Betar which reached
Moshe Mishaelof’s through ball left Hen Azriel with only goalkeeper
Nir Davidovich to beat, but the young Jerusalem striker was unlucky to have his
powerful effort kept out by an instinctive save from Haifa’s
Scoring opportunities were at a premium in the second half as
well, but Haifa had its chances to leave the capital with all three
Five minutes from time, substitute Idan Vered crossed the ball
from the right and Eyal Golasa’s header was centimeters away from going in,
hitting the underside of the crossbar.
In the 90th minute, goalkeeper
Harush ensured the hosts ended the match with a point, keeping out Vladimir
Dvalishvili’s effort from five meters out with his right foot.