Hapoel Kiryat Shmona FC have won the first domestic trophy of the season by retaining the Israeli League Cup with a 4-3 victory on penalties against Hapoel Tel-Aviv FC.
Kiryat Shmona, who have never won the league title but currently lead the Ligat Ha'al by 11 points, could not make the breakthrough in normal time but went in front three minutes into extra time when Wael Mresat volleyed in David Solari's cross.
Five minutes later, however, Abbas Mahmmoud exploited a defensive mix-up to beat Itamar Nitzan with a low drive and send the match to penalties. Both sides missed a spot-kick before Tel-Aviv's top scorer Toto Tamuz fired the decisive effort wide, allowing Kiryat Shmona's veterans Salah Hasarma, 37, and 38-year-old goalkeeper Eyal Vakrat to lift the trophy.
Captain Adrian Rochet said: "It is the first trophy this season and we are still on course to win the other two. This season is very long but we are certainly in a good position." Coach Ran Ben Shimon added: "The players deserve to celebrate and we shouldn't think about anything else right now."
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