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John Pantsil's Hapoel Tel Aviv knocked out of Uefa Europa League

John Pantsil played in Hapoel's 1-0 defeat at Athletico Madrid

Ghana defender John Pantsil played full throttle for Hapoel Tel Aviv in their 1-0 defeat at Athletico Madrid that ended their campaign in the Uefa Europa League on Thursday night.

Running free of the visiting defence down the right, the lively Adrián López cut the ball into the area.

Goalkeeper Édel Apoula could only parry out to Emre Belözo?lu, whose spin and pass back towards Raúl García was met with a firm shot that bounced in off the crossbar.

The goal jolted Josef Abuksis’s side – bottom of the group – into action and they went close to equalising when Hanan Maman headed Roei Gordana’s corner into the side netting.

Eliran Danin then caused a fright among the home support as he broke clear and nodded John Pantsil’s centre wide.

Hapoel demonstrated plenty of enthusiasm as they sought to curtail Atlético’s 11-match European winning streak at the Vicente Calderón, with Tal Ben Haim bursting clean through after the interval only to be denied by Sergio Asenjo.

The experienced right back was shown the yellow in the 73 minute.

The defeat ended Hapoel’s adventure in the competition but their performance was an improvement on their 3-0 defeat against the champions in the reverse fixture.

The former Fulham man is expected to continue with his fine form for the Israeli giants ahead of next year’s African Cup of Nations in South Africa.

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