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African All Stars

Olawale: Afcon prospect bags brace as Hapoel Raanana defeat Sektzia Nes Tziona

23:12 GMT+3 13/12/2021
Peter Olawale
The Nigerian teenager found the net twice as Eldad Shavit’s men secured a comeback win over their visitors

Nigeria youth international Peter Olawale was on song as Hapoel Raanana subdued Sektzia Nes Tziona 2-1 in Monday’s Israeli Liga Leumit encounter.

The teenager put up a commanding display to inspire Eldad Shavit’s men to a comeback win after a sloppy start.

Unbeaten in their last four matches in all competitions, Raanana welcomed the Ness Ziona Stadium giants to the Karnei Oren Memorial Field, with the ambition of continuing their impressive form

Nonetheless, it was the visitors – who silenced Hapoel Afula 4-0 their last time out – who went in front after 27 minutes.

Profiting from some shaky defending, Amnon Tadale put the ball beyond goalkeeper Barak Levi.

The lead lasted for just six minutes as the Nigeria U20 star restored parity with a cool finish that was unstoppable for goalkeeper Yossi Ginzburg.

Four minutes later, he completed his brace from the penalty spot following an infringement in Nes Tziona’s danger area.

Despite an improved display by the visiting side, they went into the half time break with a goal deficit.

The second half commenced on an explosive note as both teams came out with the ambition to get the job done.

Even at that, no goals were recorded as Shavit’s side cruised to their fifth triumph of the 2021-22 campaign.

Speaking to GOAL after the game, the former Tripple 44 Academy prodigy is pleased to have helped his team cage their opponents.

“I feel great helping my team emerge victorious this evening. It was a good win and I thank my teammates for playing very well,” Olawale told GOAL.

“Before today’s game, Sektzia Nes Tziona have not lost in their last five matches and we knew it would be a tough game for us.

“One thing that worked for us was that we did not press the panic button when they scored first. We fought back and got the result because we needed it so badly.”

With this result, Hapoel Raanana climbed to 13th on the log after accruing 15 points from 14 points.

Olawale broke into the international limelight when he shone for Nigeria at the 2019 U17 World Cup. A year later, he was promoted to the Nigeria U20 team handled by coach Ladan Bosso.

Should he maintain his goalscoring form, he could be a surprise inclusion in Augustine Eguavoen’s Nigeria squad for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations billed for Cameroon next month.