Israel defeats Georgia 1-0 in Euro 2012 qualifier

Tal Ben Haim’s second-half goal gave Israel a 1-0 victory over Georgia on Tuesday to boost the team’s hopes of qualifying for the 2012 European Championship.

The defender struck in the 59th minute at a packed Bloomfield Stadium to lead Israel to its second win in four days, after the 2-1 victory over Latvia on Saturday.

Israel rose to third in Group F, level on 10 points with Croatia but trailing on goal difference. Greece leads with 11 points.

Chelsea midfielder Yossi Benayoun made his first appearance since injuring his Achilles in September, coming on as a 71st-minute substitute as a resolute Israel wore down the Eastern Europeans.