Birkirkara managed to take three points home despite playing for an hour in ten men as they beat Pembroke Athleta 1-0 at the National Stadium. Three points which put them once again back in fourth place, three points ahead of Floriana.
Pembroke, on the other hand, have now gone five matches without a win, losing four games in the process.
Birkirkara coach Drazen Besek could not count on the suspended Ryan Camenzuli and the injured Mauricio Mazzetti and Joseph Zerafa. Paltemio Barbetti and Leighton Grech were missing for Pembroke.
The Stripes managed to take the lead on the 18th minute when off a corner by Edison Bilbao Zarate, Matija Smrekar headed the ball into the direction of Cain Attard whose attempt was blocked, Smrekar took the rebound but his shot was blocked by Alex Cini but once again, he took the rebound and placed the ball at the back of the net.
On the half-hour, Pembroke could have equalised when they were awarded a penalty after Manolito Micallef was brought down inside the area by Miroslav Kopric. Referee Malcolm Spiteri sent off the Birkirkara goalkeeper but Gustavo Villalobos’ effort from the penalty spot was neutralised by Akpan.
PEMBROKE Mario Muscat, Zoran Levnaic, Alex Cini, Miguel Attard (61′ Gustavo de Paulo da Nobrega), OwenBugeja, Manolito Micallef, Siraj Arab Eddin (69′ Obinna Obiefule), Ariel Laudisi, Gustavo Villalobos, Terence Agius, Kyle O’Brien.
Subs not used: Matthew Farrugia, Rennie Tanti, Tyron Fenech, Patmore Shereni, Neil Grech.
Coach: Winston Muscat
B’KARA Miroslav Kopric, Cain Attard, Gareth Sciberras, Christian Bubalovic, Goran Mujanovic, Mislav Andelkovic, Ryan Scicluna, Matthew Guillaumier (31′ Ini Etim Akpan gk), Edison David Bilbao Zarate (69′ Edmond Agius), Matija Smrekar (85′ Kurt Zammit), L’Imam Seydi.
Subs not used: Ryan Darmanin, Fabien Lufi, Andrea Curmi, Zach Cassar.
Coach: Drazen Besek
Referee: Malcolm Spiteri
Assistant Referees: William Debattista, Duncan Sultana
Fourth Official: Fyodor Zammit
Yellow Cards: Guillaumier, Agius, Mujanovic, Scicluna, Sciberras
Red Cards: 31′ Miroslav Kopric
Scorers: 18′ Matija Smrekar
BOV Player of the Match: Goran Mujanovic