Hapoel TA soccer 224.88.
(photo credit: AP)
Hapoel Tel Aviv will host Maccabi Tel Aviv in the ninth round of the State Cup in a mouth-watering derby encounter, which could have easily also been the final.
The clubs from Israeli soccer's top two divisions, the Premier League and the National League, enter the competition for the first time in the ninth round and the highlight of Sunday's draw was undoubtedly the pairing of Tel Aviv's big two.
"We've received an awkward draw, but we will do our best to advance," Hapoel coach Eli Gutman said about the derby match, which will be played on February 14 with the rest of the round of 32 matches.
"This is a very interesting and challenging draw," Maccabi chairman Aviv Bushinsky said.
Besides the Tel Aviv derby, there will be two more all-Premier League encounters in the last 32.
Maccabi Netanya hosts Maccabi Petah Tikva and cup holder Betar Jerusalem visits Ironi Kiryat Shmona.
Full draw: Hapoel Ramat Gan - Maccabi Haifa; Ironi Netivot - Hapoel Acre; Ramat Hasharon - Ironi Kiryat Ata; Bnei Yehuda - Hapoel Umm el-Fahem; Hapoel Kfar Saba - Maccabi Herzliya; Hapoel Afula - Hapoel Ashkelon; Maccabi Ahi Nazareth - Hapoel Haifa; Hapoel Ra'anana - Bnei Sakhnin; Hakoach Amidar Ramat Gan - Haopel Beersheba; Nes Tziona - Hapoel Upper Nazareth; Bnei Lod - Hapoel Petah Tikva; Hapoel Bnei Tamra - Dimona; Hapoel Jerusalem - Ashdod SC.