Group F leaders Greece maintained their unbeaten record in qualifying as
Sotiris Ninis scored the only goal of their Euro 2012 qualifier against Israel
in Tel Aviv.
The visitors went into the game without having lost under coach Fernando Santos
and that streak continued as they made it five wins and two draws from their
seven games so far.
Greece had the better of the first half though their shooting left a little to
Dimitris Salpingidis' 24th-minute strike was at least on target - Dudu Aouate
held on - but the majority of the visitors' efforts were wayward.
Eran Zahavi had a rare chance for Israel with a free-kick in the 35th minute
but sent his strike over the bar, while Giorgos Karagounis did likewise at the
Itay Shechter fired over for Israel before Greece wasted a pair of chances in
Ioannis Zaradoukas' effort from the edge of the box presented Aouate with a
comfortable save, before Karagounis shot over the bar moments later.
The visitors continued to have the better of things after the restart and came
close when a header from Georgios Samaras was blocked by Rami Gershon.
They got the goal they deserved on the hour mark as Ninis fired home from 20
The goal sparked a response from Israel, with Lior Rafaelov's volley from a
Bebras Natkho corner going over.
Greece goalkeeper Michail Sifakis was called into action to save a 25-yard
free-kick in the 72nd minute after Kostas Katsouranis had fouled Rafaelov, who
himself sent an effort over the bar as the game went into the last 10 minutes.
Samaras sent a late chance wide for Greece as the challenge from Israel