Malta Football Association
Useful test for Malta girls despite Slovakia defeat
Feb 18, 2021
Posted in:
Women's Friendlies
The Malta women's team lost to Slovakia in VisitMalta Women's Trophy. PHOTO: Domenic Aquilina/MFA
The Malta women's team lost to Slovakia in VisitMalta Women's Trophy. PHOTO: Domenic Aquilina/MFA





MALTA       0

The VisitMalta Women’s Trophy kicked off this afternoon with the Malta women’s team taking on Slovakia at the Hibernians Stadium. Slovakia, ranked 45th in the world, were the better side as they obtained a 4-0 victory.

Slovakia made sure of victory with two early goals in the first half. Lucia Ondrusova marked her 100th appearance with a third goal in the second half, her second against Malta as her maiden goal at international level came against the Maltese back in 2006. Substitute Maria Mikolajova rounded the scoring with a delightful lob deep into stoppage time.


Malta, ranked number 85, found the going tough but this was a useful test, also considering the number of absent players, in preparation for the upcoming 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup qualifiers which will commence this September.


Coach Mark Gatt handed the captaincy to Charlene Zammit in the absence of Dorianne Theuma. Defender Alishia Sultana earned her 40th cap while Rachel Cuschieri and Emma Xuereb, who came on in the second half, are one game shy of their 70th and 60th appearance for Malta.


Slovakia made their intentions clear from the start, forging ahead when Jana Vojtekova whipped in a free-kick and Veronika Slukova capitalised to slot the ball past Janice Xuereb.


Malta replied with a Brenda Borg back-heeled effort that was smothered away by Slovakia’s goalkeeper Patricia Chladekova. Moments later, Patricia Hmirova produced an effort from the edge of the area only to be denied by Xuereb.


In the 21st minute, Kristina Panakova stunned Xuereb with a long-range effort to double Slovakia’s lead.


Vojtekova’s free-kick sailed over the bar before Alexandra Biroova almost found a third with a header inside the penalty area. Panakova and Hmirova threatened Xuereb again with long-range conclusions before the Birkirkara goalkeeper denied the latter with a fantastic save as Malta trailed by two at the break.


At the restart, coach Gatt replaced Veronique Mifsud and Borg with Ann-Marie Said and Martina Borg respectively.


Slovakia had the first chance of the second half, once again through Hmirova whose curling effort went wide. Past the hour mark, Slovakia struck the woodwork directly from a corner as they continued to push for a third.


Slukova forced Xuereb into action when she hit a close-range effort but was denied by Malta’s goalkeeper.


Late in the game, substitues Ondrusova and Mikolajova added gloss to Slovakia’s win with late goals.


Malta’s second and final match in this tournament is against fifth-ranked Sweden on Tuesday.


J. Xuereb, S. Farrugia, C. Zammit, N. Sciberras, A. Sultana, J. Flask (89 S. Buttigieg), S. Zammit, V. Mifsud (46 A. Said), R. Cuschieri (82 K. Chetcuti), M. Farrugia (66 E. Xuereb), B. Borg (46 M. Borg).


P. Chladekova, A. Biroova (M. Mikolajova 62), K. Panakova, P. Fisherova, P. Hmirova (62 D. Lemesova), K. Kosikova, D. Bartovicova, D. Skorvankova (56 L. Ondrusova), J. Vojtekova, M. Surnovska, V. Slukova (M. Havranova 62).


Referee M. Aufschnaiter (Austria FA).

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