Malta Football Association
Malta U21s secure last-gasp victory to gain first points
Oct 12, 2018
Posted in:
U/21 Qualifiers
The Malta Under-21 players and staff celebrate their win over Hungary.
The Malta Under-21 players and staff celebrate their win over Hungary.

2019 UEFA U-21 Championship (Group 6) – 12.10.2018


MALTA        2
(HT: 1-0)

The Malta Under-21 team attained a dramatic 2-1 victory over Hungary to secure their first points in Group 6 of the 2019 UEFA Under-21 Championship qualifying campaign at the Centenary Stadium on Friday.

A hard-fought and absorbing match looked set to end 1-1 after the visitors had cancelled out Matthew Guillaumier’s early opener for Malta but Silvio Vella’s boys showed great resilience to grab a stoppage-time winner thanks to Myles Beerman.


His last-gasp strike was greeted with great joy at the Centenary Stadium as the Malta U-21s finally saw their efforts rewarded with the three points.


Jake Galea, the Malta Under-21 goalkeeper, made an early save to repel a shot by Attila Szalai with the Maltese defenders reacting quickly to clear the ball away.


The Maltese youngsters settled and it was not long before they took the lead.


Twelve minutes into the game, captain Jurgen Degabriele delivered a perfect free-kick into the six-yard box and Guillaumier headed home from close in.


Buoyed by this goal, Malta stayed on the front foot. Six minutes later, Kyrian Nwoko was marginally wide with a fine shot.


Hungary threatened an equaliser on 20 minutes when Kevin Varga crossed for Donat Zsoter but his final effort was high and wide. The visiting side were dangerous again late in the first half as Janos Hegedus won a ball in midfield and drove forward but his weak shot was stopped by Galea.


Hungary pressed for an equaliser at the start of the second half. They managed to do that three minutes after the restart when Donat Zsoter’s cross was met by Szalai who had the better of Galea with a powerful header.


Vella’s boys staged an immediate reaction, going close to regaining the lead on 56 minutes when Nwoko passed to Degabriele who served the advancing Dunstan Vella but the latter’s grounder was turned away by Balazs Bese, the Hungary goalkeeper.


Both teams were now creating scoring chances as they pushed for a winner.


Galea intercepted a menacing cross-shot from Varga and, at the other end, Zack Scerri’s corner sailed towards Nwoko but his header was touched away for a corner by Bese.


Malta were not to be denied though. In stoppage time, Beerman, currently playing on loan with Birkirkara from Glasgow Rangers, received an excellent pass from Degabriele before unleashing a strong drive that hit the back of the net to the delight of his team-mates and the home fans.


The Malta U-21s will now be aiming to replicate this performance and victory when they host Cyprus in their final Group 6 qualifier on Tuesday at the Centenary Stadium.


1-Jake Galea, 2-Jean Borg, 3-Kurt Zammit, 4-Karl Micallef, 5-Dunstan Vella, 6-Matthew Guillaumier (14-Nikolai Muscat 73), 9-Kyrian Nwoko, 10-Jurgen Degabriele (18-Zachary Brincat 90), 11-Myles Beerman (7-Jan Busuttil 90+2), 16-Michele Sansone, 17-Zachary Scerri.
Coach: Silvio Vella


12-Balazs Bese, 8-Daniel Gazdag (20-Bence Bano-Szabo 75), 9-Bence Biro, 10-Donat Zsoter, 11-Kevin Varga, 13-Attila Szalai, 15-Janos Hegedus (7-Gabor Makrai 46) (2-Donat Szivacski 65), 18-Attila Haris, 19-Norbert Kundrak, 21-Mate Katona, 23-Csaba Spandler.
Coach: Michael Boris


REFEREE: Eldorjan Hamiti (ALB)


SCORERS: M. Guillaumier 12, M. Beerman 90 (M); A. Szalai 48 (H).

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