Israeli football star hailed for “greatest time-wasting performance of all time”
Mohammad Abu Fani of Maccabi Haifa has become a hero to his team’s fans and an internet sensation for the most unlikely of reasons: waste of time.
The little football star has been credited with helping his side achieve a crucial victory this week, not by scoring goals but by keeping the ball close to the opposing corner flag for more than two minutes until the end. Match.
Carrying the ball to the corner flag is a classic tactic as teams seek to time matches, but Abu Fani, an Israel international, turned it into an art form in Monday’s game.
Deep in extra time, with Haifa 3-2 ahead of Maccabi Tel Aviv, Abu Fani received the ball from a small corner. He managed to use his strength and skills to keep several frenzied Tel Aviv players off the ball before winning another corner and repeating the performance several times.
After the ball came out for a Haifa throw-in, Abu Fani then pretended to think he had another corner kick, losing several more precious seconds, while the Tel Aviv players and even the referee seemed to be getting more and more frustrated with him.
But his teammates and fans were delighted with his artistry, clearly smiling at the performance and pestering him with pleasure when the final whistle accompanied him after keeping the ball in the corner for over 2 minutes.
Video from the display has since gone viral on the internet with a fan on Reddit calling it “the biggest waste of time ever.”
“It’s a world class waste of time that I’ve never seen anything like it before,” wrote another commentator on YouTube.
The cameo capped a great night for Haifa who were down 2-0 with just 13 minutes of regulation time.
The result sees them climb to second in the Israeli Premier League, just two points behind Hapoel Beersheba.