bnei yehuda 88.
(photo credit: )
Bnei Yehuda advanced to the quarterfinals of the State Cup Monday afternoon after defeating third-league Maccabi Kafr Kanna 1-0 thanks to Moshe Biton's goal seven minutes into an extra time period.
Kafr Kanna came close to joining Hakoach Amidar Ramat Gan and Hapoel Acre as the third Cinderella team in the last eight, but a fantastic save by Bnei Yehuda 'keeper Vincent Enyeama in the dying moments of the match saved the visitors.
"It's a pity we didn't score at the end of the match," said Kafr Kanna coach Haim Levi. "We played well and were better then Bnei Yehuda for long stretches."
The hosts' keeper, Naael Akala, was shown the red card moments after Biton's winner following an outburst towards the referee.
Akala was furious with the referee, who had allowed Bnei Yehuda to take a free kick before the hosts had organized their defense. Forward Asi Baldot found Biton, who lobbed the ball over the 'keeper.
The match was originally scheduled for Saturday, but was postponed by the police due to concerns about the players' safety following the violent incidents at Nazareth's Basilica of the Annunciation on Friday evening.
Bnei Yehuda's win completed an extraordinary State Cup round in which all the away teams won their matches.
The draw for the quarterfinals took place Monday evening at IFA headquarters in Ramat Gan. Bnei Yehuda will travel to the North once again to play the National League's Hapoel Acre, who shocked Maccabi Tel Aviv 4-0 at Bloomfield Stadium on Saturday evening and will be hoping to beat another team from Tel Aviv.
In the main match of the quarterfinals, Maccabi Haifa will host Maccabi Petah Tikva. Haifa is searching for its first State Cup in eight years, while Petah Tikva's only chance of repeating this year's UEFA Cup success depends on the team qualifying for European competition via the cup.
After stunning Betar Jerusalem on Saturday, Hakoach Amidar Ramat Gan was rewarded with a lucrative home tie against Hapoel Tel Aviv. Hakoach knocked out Betar thanks to a 90th minute goal at Teddy Stadium and will face stern opposition once again when it faces the Premier League's secondplaced team.
The fourth quarterfinal will feature the Premier League's two bottom teams, Bnei Sakhnin and Hapoel Kfar Saba. As both teams face the difficult task of staying in the Premier League, they will welcome the distraction from their relegation worries.
The State Cup quarterfinal matches will take place on March 21-22.
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