The latest round of Olim League action saw a trio of matches which provided 17 goals…
England 4 Raanana 1
Saturday’s clash between England FC and Raanana opened in a spirited fashion with both sides playing attacking football and pressurising the other’s goal area. England took an early lead through an exquisite free-kick curled by Nicky Plotnek onto the underside of the crossbar and nestled in the net. Shortly after England doubled their lead with a well worked goal finished off by Chad Waldman, which…was soon followed by a strong headed goal from Omri Hamama into the net after good work from Waldman on the right hand side of the attack.
Raanana started the second half strongly, but Amitai Bakar continued his important defensive midfield role with aplomb and Roy Maron, the England goalkeeper, dominated his area. Nevertheless, the England defence was eventually breached by a good goal slotted in from left to right by Aviad Ben Meir. England responded almost immediately with a stunning solo goal from Gaby Balulu from outside the area.
The game finished 4-1. England, the reigning champions, now need to build on this result if they are to start climbing back up the league to retain their title.
Jaffa 4 Ashdod 2
As seems to be the yearly routine with Jaffa FC, a poor start to the season has been followed by a hot streak. After starting the season with three straight losses, Jaffa FC continued their three-game unbeaten streak (2-1-0) with a 4-2 win over Ashdod.
Jaffa dominated the early proceedings and were rewarded with a tap-in in the tenth minute from Sam Silverberg after excellent work from Rani Madmon and Daniel Berkeley. After the goal, Ashdod took control the match forcing Jaffa’s imposing Omer Devir into some smart saves. Not to be denied, Ashdod’s pressure eventually cracked the resolute Jaffa defense with a well-placed 25-yard drive by Ilan Amar. Despite a few more chances for both teams, the scores remained 1-1 at half-time.
Ashdod began the second half as the ended the first, and soon found themselves with a 2-1 lead thanks to a powerful finish from Ofir Firouz. With their chances of a top-half finish hanging in the balance, Jaffa turned around the game in six crazy minutes. In the 51st minute, a deft pass from Berkeley was handled by Ashdod’s defense in the box, and Alberto Elias converted the ensuing spot kick. Jaffa continued to push forward, and in the 57th minute, a smartly taken Nir Ha’Cohen corner was flicked on by Josh Silverberg to Sam Silverberg who slammed the ball home for a 3-2 lead.
Ashdod started throwing men forward in search of an equaliser, and were soon denied by a fantastic close-range save from Devir. Sam Silverberg would put the game to rest in the 86th with a lovely finish to get his hat-trick and give Jaffa a valuable 4-2 win.
After the game, an excited Silverberg expressed his joy, saying: “I’ve never scored a hat trick in my life. It’s normally Josh doing that, so for me to do it the first time was phenomenal.”
Modiin 2 Bambi 4
This clash between the top two teams started with a lot of tension in the air and very little football being played.
Modiin put on a lot of early pressure and capitalized on a poor back pass to open the scoring 1-0. Straight after the goal Bambi played a more composed game winning a corner kick taken by Adi Aishta who crossed the ball for Gil to finish 1-1
Bambi continued to press and Yoni Caduri scored a screamer of a goal blasting the ball over the Modiin keeper from the right wing. 2-1
The second half and Bambi were still dominating the game and controlling the possession constantly pressurising the Modiin goalie. A corner kick by Gal Kopilvitch was headed by Yoni Caduri who scored again, 3-1.
Modiin then worked their way back into the game scoring from a corner kick 3-2. But Bambi showed their resilience and after Hugo was fouled outside the Modiin box, Aviv Zemer scored an excellent free-kick to seal a 4-2 win.
Bambi’s Manager Yoni Sarig said after the game: “I think tonight was our biggest victory of the season. We took a while to get into the game but we showed character and eventually won. I am very proud of my team. We have made a spectacular impact in our first season in the league and are improving from game to game. Modiin is a very good team, they deserve to be on the top of the table. We will continue to move forward and try to meet the goals we set for ourselves. We are not thinking about being champions right now, our focus is on our next fixture against Ashdod.”