European campaigners Hapoel Tel-Aviv FC and Maccabi Tel-Aviv FC are counting the cost of a derby game which left them without striker Mahran Lala and defender Nivaldo respectively.
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A full-blooded derby game in Israel has cost European contenders Hapoel Tel-Aviv FC and Maccabi Tel-Aviv FC, with the sides losing striker Mahran Lala and defender Nivaldo respectively with serious knee injuries.
Hapoel beat city rivals Maccabi 3-2 in the Toto Cup game at Bloomfield stadium on Sunday, but their success was overshadowed by a severe knee ligament tear for 28-year-old striker Lala, who is now expected to miss the whole season. Hapoel's UEFA Champions League play-off tie against FC Salzburg kicks off in Austria on Wednesday evening.
Maccabi are resigned to being without Brazilian defender Nivaldo for around two months with damaged ligaments in his left knee. A summer signing from Villarreal CF, the 30-year-old's previous European clubs include CF Os Belenenses in Portugal and AS Saint-Etienne in France, Maccabi's destination on Thursday for their UEFA Europa League play-off opener against Paris Saint-Germain FC.