Malta Football Association
We got over the first hurdle, says Miller
Apr 3, 2017
Posted in:
BOV Premier League

Hibernians are now favourites to win the BOV Premier League title after a 3-1 victory over fellow challengers Balzan lifted them five points clear at the top on Super Sunday.

Mark Miller, the Hibernians coach, hailed his team's character after goals from Clayton Failla, Johann Bezzina and Jorginho kept the Paolites in the driving seat.


"It was a tight game, it was a difficult game but the boys have shown great character, they worked hard and they wanted it so bad, and I think we maybe wanted it a bit more than them," Miller said after the game.


"We got over the first hurdle, there is three battles. It's the first one and it's important that mentally, we don't think it's done, because if we lose the next one, it will be a big setback for us. We need to keep the movement going but this is a good time for us."


The win was the perfect boost for Hibernians ahead of their clash with Valletta on Wednesday.


Hibernians were the better side throughout the match but it was Balzan striker Bojan Kaljevic who had the first scoring chance after six minutes but his effort was wide.


Ten minutes from half-time, Hibs took the lead. A cross from the right by Jackson Lima sailed into the box, Gilmar left the ball for captain Clayton Failla who hit home at the far post.


Balzan equalised nine minutes later, striker Alfed Effiong heading the ball home following a corner by Ryan Fenech.


This goal failed to jolt Hibs who began the second half in brisk mode.


They went ahead 10 minutes after the restart when Jurgen Degabriele passed the ball to substitute Johan Bezzina who drove a low shot past goalkeeper Ivan Janjusevic from outside the box.


Balzan had a penalty appeal turned down after Hibs goalkeeper Andrew Hogg made a challenge on the goalbound Paul Fenech.


Reprieved, Hibernians went up at the other end and sealed the issue 15 minutes from time thanks to Jorginho whose curling shot had the better of Janjusevic.


The final whistle was followed by more protests from Balzan, still fuming after being denied what they perceived as a legitimate penalty.


After the final whistle, Balzan goalkeeper Janjusevic was shown a red card for excessive protests.


Hibernians right-back Marcelo Dias was named BOV player of the match.

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