Hibernians failed to regain the top spot in the BOV Premier League after being held in a 1-1 draw by Floriana.
Edison Luis dos Santos had a penalty saved by young Floriana goalkeeper Jurgen Borg but a few minutes later, put the Paolites ahead. However the Greens had other thoughts and four minutes in added time, levelled matters through Andre Grabowski.
Valletta therefore lead the way with 25 points, followed by Hibernians on 24 and Floriana on 17.
Floriana lacked Manuel Bartolo, Christian Caruana and Tyrone Farrugia. Hibernians, on the other hand, welcomed back Diego Balbinot but Adrian Pulis was unavailable as he recovers from an injury.
Andre Grabowski went close to putting Floriana ahead after just three minutes when he took advantage of a disattention by the Hibs defence but goalkeeper Mario Muscat blocked his attempt from close range. On the 17th, Woods served Lucas Pessanha on the left and the latter hit just wide. Hibernians replied with a Clayton Failla freekick from the right which hit the crossbar on 22 minutes.
Edison Luis dos Santos was unlucky to hit the crossbar when served by Cohen on 33 minutes with the ball bouncing on the goal line before being cleared into safety.
Three minutes from the end of the first half, Hibernians were awarded a penalty after Edison Luis dos Santos, who exchanged the ball with Cohen, was brought down inside the area by Pablo Doffo. However the Brazilian striker’s effort from the penalty spot was parried by Floriana goalkeeper Jurgen Borg.
But on the 45th minute, the Paolites were not to be denied as Edison Luis dos Santos received a pass by Ryan Camilleri from the right and with a fine volley, he beat the Floriana custodian.
Coach Michael Woods was sent off by referee Chris Lautier on 76 minutes.
Tarabai missed a good chance on 84 minutes, hitting high from inside the area when served by Cohen.
Four minutes in added time, Floriana notched the equaliser when off a freekick from the right, Ryan Darmanin headed the ball in the direction of Andre Grabowski who managed to slot the ball past Mario Muscat.
Edison Luis dos Santos was voted BOV Player of the Match.
HIBS Mario Muscat, Ryan Camilleri, Aaron Xuereb, Rodolfo Soares, Edward Herrera (64’ Peter Anizoba), Diego Balbinot, Clayton Failla, Bjorn Kristensen (62’ Triston Caruana), Andrew Cohen (90+1’ Steve Pisani), Marcelo Dias, Edison Luis dos Santos.
Subs not used: Luke Bonnici, Jonathan Pearson, Johann Bezzina, Ayrton Azzopardi.
Coach: Mark Miller
Asst. Coach: Richard Mercieca
FLORIANA Jurgen Borg, Duncan Pisani, Manolito Micallef, Pablo Doffo, Owen Bugeja, Ivan Woods (24’ Joseph Borg), Andre Grabowski, Lucas Pessanha, Christian Cassar (46’ John Mintoff), Thomas Paris (69’ Ryan Darmanin), Clyde Borg.
Subs not used: Luke Falzon, Luke Agius, Jermain Brincat, Chris Grech.
Coach: Michael Woods
Asst. Coach: Frank Schembri
Referee: Chris Lautier
Assistant referees: Edward Spiteri, Sammy Attard
Fourth official: Glenn Tonna
Yellow Cards: Dias, Pisani, Pessanha, Bugeja, dos Santos, Grabowski, J. Borg, T. Caruana
Scorers: 45’ Edison Luis dos Santos; 90+4′ Andre Grabowski
Marsaxlokk returned to winning ways as they registered a 5-3 win over Hamrun Spartans in an entertaining clash at the Victor Tedesco Stadium.
The Southseasiders dominated during the first half, scoring four goals in the first forty four minutes. After the break, the two teams shared the exchanges with the Spartans making the most out of the chances they created.
Florent Raimy was missing for Marsaxlokk but Clive Brincat was back after serving a suspension. With no coach being appointed yet, Malcolm Licari led the team from the bench.
Carlo Polli and Dene Shields returned for Hamrun Spartans but Roderick Fenech was ruled out injured.
Hamrun had the first attempt at goal with a Massimo Grima freekick which was parried by Reuben Gauci. Marsaxlokk then went close with attempts by Emiliano Lattes and Obinna Obiefule. A Dene Shields effort was then blocked by Gauci before the ball was cleared into a corner on 13 minutes.
Marsaxlokk managed to take the lead on 18 minutes when Obinna Obiefule rounded a defender and with an angled shot from the left, he beat goalkeeper Andrea Cassar.
On the half-hour, Obiefule once again tried his luck with a shot from outside the area which was tipped into a corner by Andea Cassar. From the resulting corner by Martin Deanov, Obinna Obiefule headed home.
The Southseasiders were awarded a penalty on 33 minutes after Obiefule exchanged the ball with Lattes only to be floored by Massimo Grima inside the area. From the penalty spot, Obinna Obiefule made no mistake to make it 3-0.
One minute from the end of the first half, Marsaxlokk scored the fourth goal when Carlos Campagnoli concluded a solo effort with a diagonal shot from the left which beat the Hamrun custodian.
The first half was not over yet as one minute in added time, Massimo Grima pulled one back for Hamrun with a direct freekick which beat goalkeeper Reuben Gauci.
Eight minutes in the second half, Massimo Grima had another powerful shot from the right, turned into a corner by the Marsaxlokk goalkeeper. Gauci then turned into a corner a Dene Shields effort.
Emilano Lattes increased the lead for Marsaxlokk on 72 minutes when he stole the ball off Matthew Gauci and beat Cassar with a shot from the right.
The Spartans’ immediate reaction consisted of a Massimo Grima long-distance effort which hit the crossbar and a minute later, substitute Gaetan Spiteri had a close-range effort partially saved by Gauci. On the other side of the pitch, a rising shot by Emiliano Lattes was tipped into a corner by Cassar.
With a great rising shot from the left, Dene Shields beat Reuben Gauci for Hamrun’s second goal on 84 minutes.
Two minutes later, a powerful drive by Massimo Grima beat goalkeeper the Marsaxlokk goalkeeper
In added time, Gary Caruana had a powerful shot turned into a corner by Cassar.
Obinna Obiefule was voted BOV Player of the Match.
M’XLOKK Reuben Gauci, Jonathan Xerri, Carlo Mamo, Clive Brincat, Gary Caruana, Sunday Eboh (75’ Jean Paul Farrugia), Carlos Campagnoli, Emiliano Lattes (89’ Malcolm Licari), Martin Deanov, Modesto Valeriani, Obinna Obiefule.
Subs not used: Christian Cassar, Jean Claude Vella, Stefan Cutajar, Darrell Grech, Kevin Polidano.
Team Manager: Andy Caruana
HAMRUN Andrea Cassar, Nikica Gacesa, Daniel Zerafa (46’ Gaetan Spiteri), Massimo Grima, Anderson Mendes Ribeiro (76’ Carlos Eduardo Toneto Porcari), Kevin Sammut, Matthew Gauci (75’ Lee James Agius), Carlo Polli, David Camilleri, Gianluca Calabretta, Dene Shields.
Subs not used: Omar Borg, Rupert Mangion, Glenn Azzopardi, Luis Fernando Silva.
Coach: Jesmond Zammit
Asst. Coach: Vince Carbonaro
Referee: Clayton Pisani (replaced by Mario Apap on 54 minutes)
Assistant referees: William Debattista, Paul Apap
Fourth official: Mario Apap
Yellow Cards: Gacesa, Brincat, Lattes, Campagnoli, Farrugia, Shields
Scorers: 18’ Obinna Obiefule, 31’ Obinna Obiefule, 34’ Obinna Obiefule (pen), 44’ Carlos Campagnoli, 45+1’ Massimo Grima, 72’ Emiliano Lattes, 84’ Dene Shields, 86’ Massimo Grima