Malta Football Association
Valletta ease past St Andrews to go top
Oct 29, 2017
Posted in:
BOV Premier League

VALLETTA        3


Valletta took full advantage of Gżira United’s 1-1 draw against Senglea Athletic as they eased past St Andrews 3-0 to go top of the BOV Premier League standings on 22 points, two ahead of the Maroons.

It took Valletta only six minutes to break the deadlock. Matteo Picciolo’s through-pass released Bazilian striker Denni who scored with a low shot.


Midway into the first half, Valletta doubled their advantage.


A diagonal cross from Uchenna Umeh Calistus was met by Jean Borg whose header had the better of Matthew Calleja Cremona, the St Andrews goalkeeper.


The game was a good as over on 34 minutes when Umeh supplied a perfect pass to Kyrian Nwoko who dashed into the box from the left and sent a low cross towards the unmarked Picciolo who tapped home at the far post.


Three goals to the good, Valletta controlled the proceedings in the second half to run out 3-0 winners.



FLORIANA          2

Floriana needed a last-gasp penalty to overcome Naxxar Lions 2-1, their first victory after three consecutive draws.


The Greens took the lead four minutes from half-time. Ignacio Varela’s well-hit effort from outside the area flew past Naxxar Lions goalkeeper Christoph Nicht.


With 13 minutes remaining, Naxxar shocked Floriana as they equalised through Adrian Cascaval who headed the ball past goalkeeper Ini Etim Akpan.


Late drama was in store as, five minutes from time, Floriana were awarded a penalty after Maurizio Vella was floored inside the penalty box. Mario Fontanella’s shot was saved by the Naxxar goalkeeper. 


Floriana’s hopes of taking the three points looked to have vanished but, two minutes into stoppage time, they won another penalty after substitute Leighton Grech was floored in the box.


This time, Fontanella made amends for his earlier miss to give Floriana a much-needed boost.





Hibernians bounced back from their 1-0 defeat to Sliema Wanderers with a straightforward victory over bottom side Lija Athletic.


Lija Athletic were without suspended goalkeeper Luke Bonnici and Daniel Scerri, while Brazilian Leandro Augusto da Silva forward made his debut for Hibs.


Hibernians opened the scoring four minutes from the end of the first half. Jurgen Degabriele supplied a through-ball to Marco Sahanek who controlled well before firing past Jonathan Martinelli, the Lija goalkeeper.


The Paolites continued to dominate the game but had to wait until six minutes from time to extend their lead.


Latching on to Jackson Lima’s pass, Degabriele dribbled past the Lija goalkeeper before placing the ball into the net.


A minute from time, substitute Johann Bezzina made it 3-0 when his effort had the better of the Lija custodian after taking a slight deflection off Predrag Babic.



BIRKIRKARA               3


Birkirkara made it two wins in a row after brushing aside Tarxien Rainbows 3-1 at the Centenary Stadium on Saturday.


The Stripes went ahead on the stroke of half-time with a free-kick from Fabiano which came off Tarxien’s Ryan Darmanin on its way into the net.


Fabiano doubled Birkirkara’s lead two minutes into the second half after receiving from Luke Montebello.


Tarxien reduced the deficit on 63 minutes when Matteo Desira Buttigieg, on as a substitute, capitalised on a defensive mistake to beat David Cassar with a low shot.


This goal looked to have revived Tarxien’s hopes but Birkirkara restored their two-goal lead when Nikola Vukanac headed home Jake Grech’s free-kick.



GŻIRA UNITED          1


Senglea Athletic scored a late penalty equaliser to hold Gżira United to a 1-1 draw in Friday’s match at the Centenary Stadium.


Gżira piled the pressure on Senglea in the first half but efforts from Roderick Briffa and Andrew Cohen, directly from a corner, were repelled by Senglea goalkeeper Giulio Cetrangolo who had a great match.


Amadou Samb headed wide late in the first half but Gżira broke the stalemate early in the second thanks to Ndubisi Okoye who headed home at the far post after meeting Samb’s cross.


Gżira went close to doubling their advantage on 58 minutes when Okoye crossed for captain Moises Avila Perez but the latter’s shot finished wide. Avila Perez was playing his 100th match for Gżira.


On 69 minutes, Senglea right-back Randall Vella hauled down Samb in the box and referee Trustin Farrugia Cann pointed to the spot.


Samb stepped up for the penalty but his shot was superbly beaten away by Cetrangolo and, from the rebound, the Gżira striker blasted high, to the relief of the Senglea players.


Senglea almost drew level in the 76th minute as Sergio Uyi’s free-kick hit the crossbar but they equalised in the closing stages.


A free-kick by Escobar was parried away by Justin Haber and, amid the ensuing melee, Clifford Gatt Baldacchino floored Antonio Terracino.


Farrugia Cann ordered a penalty and Terence Vella made no mistake to rescue a point for Senglea.

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