The best team lost, says Oscar
FOOTBALL Oscar Garcia felt aggrieved after Maccabi Tel Aviv tumbled out of the Champions League following a 3-2 aggregate defeat against Maribor.
Trailing 1-0 from the away leg, Maccabi fell further behind when Agim Ibrami put the visitors ahead in a match played in Larnaca due to the security situation in Israel.
Goals either side of half-time from Tal Ben-Haim and Eden Ben Basat put Maccabi back in contention in the third qualifying round contest, but Ibrami ended their hopes after firing past Juan Pablo moments later.
“We were far better than them,” said Garcia. “But you must not only play well, you must also take your chances.
“I don’t believe we have failed by going out of the competition. It’s not as though we reach the group stage every season. In fact, we’ve only ever been there once.”
With their hopes of progress in the premier competition over, Maccabi will now go into the playoff round for the Europa League group stage.
Hapoel Tel Aviv hope to join Maccabi after claiming a 1-1 draw against Dynamo Moscow in Russia.
Rodgers Kola registered what could prove to be a vital away goal, with Kevin Kuranyi replying.
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