Local soccer goes soul searching after Tel Aviv derby brawl

November 5, 2014 08:25

The shock waves continued to reverberate through Israeli soccer on Tuesday following the ugly scenes which forced the abandonment of Monday’s Tel Aviv derby between Hapoel and Maccabi.

During the 33rd minute of the match at Bloomfield Stadium, with the score tied at 1-1, a Hapoel fan jumped out of the stands and ran onto the pitch to confront Maccabi star Eran Zahavi. The two exchanged blows for over 10 seconds until the intruder was finally reprehended by the stewards. Zahavi was sent off for his part in the brawl and it took over 10 minutes until the match could be resumed. However, it was stopped for good only several seconds later after Maccabi fans burst onto the pitch.The violent incidents at Bloomfield have been unanimously condemned by politicians, police chiefs and anyone related to Israeli sports.

However, there is little agreement regarding who should shoulder the main blame for the shocking skirmish on the pitch.

Fingers were pointed in every direction on Tuesday, with police blaming the fans, Hapoel blaming Zahavi and Maccabi blaming Hapoel.

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