Late leveller denies Irish
IRELAND came from behind to take the lead only to have victory snatched from their grasp by a last-gasp equaliser in the first of their two friendlies against Israel in Ra'anana yesterday.
Following a frantic start, Israel took a rather fortunate lead after 11 minutes when Irish goalkeeper Joe Coll was deceived by what looked like an intended cross by Assaf Madar.
However, the visitors drew level on 22 minutes when Evergreen's Michael Drennan scored from the penalty spot after Kenneth McEvoy's cross had been handled.
As the first half progressed, John Morling's side grew in confidence, producing a number of slick attacking moves, and Reading's James Murphy came close on a number of occasions.
The hosts, though, always looked dangerous on the counter-attack and Coll had to make two brilliant saves to thwart them before Ireland went ahead after 48 minutes when Ballincollig's Carel Tiofack netted from close range.
That looked like being enough to secure the win, but Israel equalised five minutes into added-time with a powerful header from substitute Orel Horev which gave Coll no chance. The teams meet again tomorrow.
IRISH TEAM IN FACTFILE