Benayoun goal gives Israel win

TEL AVIV - Yossi Benayoun's close-range goal in the 76th minute earned Israel a 1-0 win over Hungary in an unimpressive international friendly in Tel Aviv on Wednesday.

The Israelis were hardly threatened by Hungary in a match played at almost leisurely pace for much of the 90 minutes. Israel dominated possession but were undone by poor passing and weak finishing.

Benayoun's goal gave the home fans some reason to cheer when he flicked the ball onto Hungary goalkeeper Marton Fulop's legs from close up and it deflected into the net after an excellent, low cross in from the left by defender Dedi Ben Dayan.

Israel next play Greece in two World Cup qualifiers in the space of four days -- first at home on March 28 -- that could go a long way to determining which of the two advance to South Africa 2010 from qualifying group two.

"This was not a high-quality game but it was good to win. It will not be good enough to beat Greece, but we have learned something today. We gave the ball away too much," Israel coach Dror Kashtan said.