Malta Football Association
Prestigious 1-1 draw for Malta U-19 team against Belgium
Nov 17, 2018
Posted in:
U19 - Qualifiers


Centenary Stadium, Ta’ Qali, Malta

(HT 1-1)
0-1 Brendan Schoonbaert, o.g, 11, 1-1 Benadan Schoonbaert 45.

The Malta Under-19 team earned a prestigious point today against a powerful Belgian side on the second matchday of the UEFA Under-19 mini tournament. The team of coach Winston Muscat, who were beaten by France 0-1 in the opener on Wednesday, displayed another disciplined performance with a perfect tactical defensive plan which kept the Belgians at bay for long stretches. Despite the immense pressure late in the game, the Maltese managed to hold on to a point.

Malta started well, taking the lead in the 11th minute via an own goal.


A good move on the left side ended up in the feet of Alex Satariano who crossed into the box with Belgian left defender Brendan Schoonbaert, in an attempt to clear the danger, scored into his own net.

Four minutes later goalkeeper Amara Sylla floored Ibrahim Kargbo in the box with the referee pointing immediately at the spot. However, captain Brandon Baiye failed to score, completely missing target from the spot.

On 29 minutes, Tom Reyners had a good opportunity for Belgium to level matters but his shot from inside the box was saved by Sylla.

The Belgians dominated possession without creating real chances. In the 35th minute a free-kick from Malta on the right side of the pitch was well met by Paul Mbong but his shot was too weak to trouble Robin Mantel, the Belgian custodian. One minute before the break, Adriano Bertaccini could have done better for the Belgians but his shot from just inside the box sailed over the crossbar.

In added time however, Schoonbaert made amends for his own goal by heading the equaliser past a helpless Sylla from a corner action.

The Maltese were a bit more adventurous in the second half. The first real chance was however for the Belgians as in the 50th minute a Kargbo header just missed target. Substitute goalkeeper Cain Formosa did well to intervene a Bertaccini attempt from close-in on 69 minutes. Kargbo was close to knock in the winner on 80 minuets but his header missed target.

Malta kept on playing on the counter-attack with Alex Satariano and Ayrton Attard penetrating the Belgian defence but without the desired result. In the 89th minute, Formosa made two brilliant saves to deny the Belgians a win. The first one was of substitute Lois Openda while, after the resulting corner-kick, Formosa also saved a shot from Reyners.

Deep into added time, Mantel saved a free-kick by Satariano. It was the last action of the match and the final whistle of the referee brought much joy with the Maltese clan.

Malta: Amara Sylla, (Cain Formosa 46’), Andreas Vella, Dejan Debono, Christian Gauci, Adam Magri-Overend, Shawn Dimech, Carlo Zammit-Lonardell, (Matthew Portelli 91’), Marcus Grima, Ayrton Attard, (Clyde Bouvet 86’), Alex Satariano, Paul Mbong, (Andrei Spiteri 76’).

Referee: Duje Strukan (Croatia)

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