(photo credit: Adi Avishai)
Maccabi Tel Aviv was drawn on Thursday to host Betar Jerusalem in a
mouthwatering last 16 State Cup tie.
Also in the round of 16, which will
be played on February 26/27, Maccabi welcomes Hapoel in a Haifa derby, while
Hapoel Tel Aviv, which has won the competition in the past three years, visits
Hapoel Kfar Saba of the National League.
Before it turns its focus to
Kfar Saba, Hap TA will look to revive its Premier League title challenge,
starting with Saturday’s match against Maccabi Netanya at Bloomfield
Hapoel has won just two of its past eight league games and
dropped to third place in the standings, five points behind Maccabi Tel Aviv,
after suffering its second straight loss on Sunday, falling 3-0 at the hands of
the rampant Maccabi Haifa.
Second-placed Haifa doesn’t visit Bnei Yehuda
until Sunday by which time it could find itself eight points back of the
The yellow-and-blue thrashed Hapoel Acre 4-0 last week,
taking its goal difference over its past five home wins to 21-3.
Maccabi is winless over its last four road matches entering Saturday’s visit of
Hapoel Ramat Gan at the National Stadium.
Rock-bottom Acre fired coach
Shimon Hadari on Thursday after going winless in its past 14 league matches
before being knocked out of the cup by third division Hapoel Afula. Acre hosts
Ironi Kiryat Shmona on Saturday.
Also Saturday, Hapoel Haifa welcomes
Bnei Sakhnin and Hapoel Beersheba visits Ashdod SC.
Kadiyev and Zaur Sadayev trained with Betar Jerusalem for the first time on
Thursday, but are not expected to play for the team when it visits Hapoel Ramat
Hasharon on Sunday.