Malta Football Association
Balzan exit Europa League with heads held high
Jul 5, 2017
Posted in:
BOV Premier League
Photo: Paul Zammit Cutajar/MFA
Photo: Paul Zammit Cutajar/MFA

  • Photo: Paul Zammit Cutajar/MFA
  • Photo: Joe Borg/MFA
  • Photo: Joe Borg/MFA
  • Photo: Domenic Aquilina/MFA
  • Photo: Domenic Aquilina/MFA
  • Photo: Paul Zammit Cutajar/MFA

BALZAN     3


Balzan bowed out of the Europa League with their heads held high after figuring in a 3-3 draw against Hungarian side Videoton at the Hibs Stadium on Tuesday.

Trailing 2-0 from last week’s first leg, Balzan were up against it in the home match but they made a contest of it, even if their chances of qualifying had receded when Videoton, runners-up in the Hungarian championship last season, scored twice in the first half to go temporarily 2-1 up.


Balzan enjoyed a dream start.


After three minutes, midfielder Cadu intercepted a poor clearance from Stopira, passed to Uros Ljubomirac who crossed perfectly for Bojan Kaljevic who tapped the ball home.


On 13 minutes, the visitors had their first real chance but Marko Scepovic’s shot was saved by Balzan goalkeeper Ivan Janjusevic.


Videoton, who reached the final of the UEFA Cup in 1985 where they lost to Real Madrid, drew level a minute later thanks to Krisztian Geresi who concluded a flowing attack.


The Hungarians kept pushing forward and doubled their lead on 24 minutes. Danko Lazovic’ through-pass was met by Marko Scepovic who had the better of Janjusevic.


The visitors were on top, Lazovic missing the target from close in after his initial shot came off the crossbar.


Balzan started the second half in bright fashion. They equalised in the 56th minute as Alfred Effiong beat the offside trap to reach a brilliant through-pass from Ryan Fenech before lifting his shot over goalkeeper Adam Kovacsik.


Lazovic’s shot on 76 minutes was blocked by Janjusevic who, a minute later, also kept out a header from captain Roland Juhasz following a corner. However, Juhasz put Videoton 3-2 ahead after meeting Lazovic’s free-kick from the right nine minutes from the end.


With five minutes on the clock, Balzan were awarded a penalty after Loic Nego tripped Effiong inside the box. Kaljevic converted from the spot to make it 3-3.


Ivan Janjusevic, Milan Savic (Lecao Alves de Paixao 72), Steve Bezzina, Bruno, Elkin Serrano Valero, Ryan Fenech, (Jamie Zerafa 85), Paul Fenech, Cadu Mendes, (Lydon Micallef 73), Uros Ljubomaric, Alfred Effiong, Bojan Kaljevic.


Adam Kovacsik, Lois Nego, Roland Juhasz, Paulo Vinicius, Ianique Dos Santos Stopira, Anel Hadzic, (Jozsef Varga 85), Mate Patkai, Krisztian Geresi, (Istvan Kovacs 60), Asmir Suljic, Marko Scepovic, Danko Lazovic, (Mirko Maric 82).


Referee: Filip Glova (Slovakia).


Attendance: 550.

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