Hapoel Be’erSheva’s Europa League adventure is all but over after they suffered a 3-1 home defeat by Turkish side Besiktas in their last 32 round first leg clash on Thursday night.
Enjoying their most successful ever European campaign, the tie, at the Turner Stadium, burst into life in the 42nd minute when a fiercely-driven cross into the box was deflected in by Hapoel defender William Soares to give the Turks a 1-0 lead.
However, the hosts didn’t let that setback affect them, and they were level before the break when captain Elyaniv Barda ran at the visitors defence, and having attempted to play a one-two with Maor Melikson, the ball fell fortuitously back to him, and he guided home the equaliser.
Barda had a glorious chance to put the Israelis ahead, though having been played in by John Ogu, he dragged his shot wide with just the goalkeeper to beat. They regretted that miss just three minutes later when Cenk Tosun spun in the box and fired in a shot, and as the home side went all out in search of an equaliser, the Turks scored what could turn out to be the match winner when with 93 minutes on the clock, Atiba Hutchinson finished off a swift counter-attack.
Having won just one of their six European away games this season, they will not only have to end a run of six unbeaten home games for Besiktas, but score at least three times, while at the same time not conceding. Any type of win would also reprsent the first time the Turkish side would have lost to Israeli opposition.