Platini Luzon 311 .
(photo credit: MK Productions)
After a two-year experiment, normality will return to the Israeli Premier League
The Israel Football Association board voted Monday to drop
the controversial point-halving format by a majority of 24 to five, with one
The IFA also decided to cut the league from 16 to 14
teams for the 2012/13 campaign, with three teams to be relegated this season and
only one to gain promotion from the National League.
“The IFA chairman
listened to the teams that said that this was a bad and unsporting format and
this insanity has finally ended,” said Maccabi Tel Aviv’s delegate on the board,
The point-halving format will continue in the National
League for next season, but it is expected to be scrapped the following year and
IFA chairman Avi Luzon announced Monday that he has no intention of making any
further changes after that.
The IFA board also voted in favor of
eliminating the midtable playoff, meaning that following two rounds of play the
league will be split in two, with the top eight teams playing each other one
more time in the battle for the championship and the bottom eight sides facing
each other once more in the fight against relegation.
In 2012/13, the
championship playoffs will be played by the top six teams only and will consist
of two rounds of play.
Meanwhile, the investigation into match fixing
continued Monday, with former Hapoel Ashkelon striker Serge Ayeli being
questioned for the first time, while Hapoel Haifa coach Nitzan Shirazi and
Hapoel Petah Tikva owner Tomer Sinai were called to the police station in Yavne
for further interrogation.
Ayeli reportedly told police that during his
days at Hapoel Ramat Gan in the 2009/10 season he was approached by someone
connected with Hapoel Petah Tikva and was asked not to play in an upcoming match
between the teams.
Ayeli scored a goal in Ramat Gan’s 2-1 victory in the
match in question.