Socceroos Central: Dream Dougall double, Ruka title

by Ben Somerford on May 31, 2021

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Kenny Dougall sent Blackpool into the English Championship with a dream double in their promotion playoffs final at Wembley, winning 2-1 over Lincoln City on Sunday.

Uncapped Socceroo Dougall, 28, saw his side go behind in the first minute, before scoring goals in the 34th and 54th minutes to earn the Seasiders promotion.

Dougall, who is a defensive midfielder, levelled it with a drilled low left-foot finish from the edge of the box.

The former Barnsley and Sparta Rotterdam man added the second with a similar strike, this time on his right foot.

Dougall had only scored two other goals this season and has scored very few throughout his entire professional career.

“You don’t get to play at Wembley often, so to score two goals is fantastic,” Dougall told Sky Sports.

Nikita Rukavytsya scored Maccabi Haifa's second goal as they won 3-2 over Hapoel Be'er Sheva to clinch the Israeli Premier League title on Sunday.

Rukavytsya has enjoyed a remarkably prolific season for Maccabi, top scoring in the league with 18 goals.

The Socceroo's goal made it 2-0 in the 34th minute and they didn’t look back, despite conceding twice in the second half.

Maccabi wins the title by four points from second-placed Maccabi Tel Aviv and also qualifies for next season's UEFA Champions League first qualifying round.

Paul Izzo and Matt Jurman both played full games as Xanthi lost 1-0 away to Panteolikos in the Greek playoffs on Sunday, meaning they miss out on promotion on away goals after it finished 2-2 on aggregate.

Xanthi, previously coached by Tony Popovic, finished second in the Greek Super League 2 after the 22-round regular season and the playoff round.

Adam Taggart made his first start for Cerezo Osaka in a 1-1 away draw with Vegalta Sendai in the Japanese J.League on Sunday.

Taggart started and played 72 minutes, having a 23rd minute left-foot chance saved.

Mitch Langerak kept another clean sheet as Nagoya Grampus drew 0-0 away to Thomas Deng's Urawa Reds on Sunday. Deng was an unused sub.

Rhys Williams put in a full shift as Al Qadsiah conceded late, meaning they are relegated after a 1-1 home draw with Abha in the Saudi Pro League on Sunday.

Dimi Petratos' Al Wehda also went down, losing 3-0 away to Al Shabab on Sunday with the Socceroo playing a full game.

Finally, Brad Smith started in Seattle Sounders' clash with Austin on Monday morning which is still ongoing.