A goal by Jackson Lima enabled Hibernians to return to winning ways as they registered a narrow win over St. Andrews at the Victor Tedesco Stadium on Sunday.
A win which puts the Paolites back in second place, on level points with Valletta. On the other hand, with this defeat, St. Andrews remain joint-third from bottom on nine points.
Hibs lacked the injured Johann Bezzina and Andrew Cohen. Jonathan Pearson and Dunstan Vella were awarded a place in the starting line-up as they replaced Juan Manuel Varea and Renan Pimenta Telles. With Daniel Brandle still ruled out injured, coach Danilo Doncic opted to start with the same team which defeated Pembroke last week.
The Saints went close after just seven minutes when off a corner from the right by Joseph Farrugia, Bong Won Che’s header hit the upright.
However Hibs managed to score the all-important goal on the 11th minute thanks to Jackson Lima’s fine volley after a short clearance by the St. Andrews defence.
On the 64th minute, Hibernians were reduced to ten men as Joseph Mbong received a second yellow card for a foul just outside the area.
HIBS Andrew Hogg, Dunstan Vella (81′ Juan Manuel Varea), Jonathan Pearson (59′ Renan Pimenta Telles), Jackson di Lima Siqueira, Rodolfo Soares, Marcelo Dias, Bjorn Kristensen, Andrei Agius, Joseph Mbong, Jorge da Silva Pereira, Jurgen Degabriele (66′ Clayton Failla).
Subs not used: Rudy Briffa, Timothy Tabone Desira, Daniel Buckle, Kieran Xuereb.
Coach: Mark Miller
ST. ANDREWS Jake Galea, Michael Johnson (86′ Ryan Darmanin), Karlo Kesinovic, Bong Won Che, Felix Udoh Okon (81′ Godwin Mckay), Enmy Manuel Pena Beltre, Kyrian Nwoko, Joseph Farrugia, Dale Camilleri, Ziga Kastrevec, Ivan Edgardo Paz (70′ Jacob Walker).
Subs not used: Dean Sciberras, Ryan Sammut, Liam Grech, Nenad Belacevic.
Coach: Danilo Doncic
Referee: Matthew De Gabriele
Assistant Referees: Alan Camilleri, Martin Borg
Fourth Official: Fyodor Zammit
Yellow Cards: Mbong, Pearson, Camilleri, Johnson
Red Cards: 64′ Joseph Mbong
Scorers: 11′ Jackson di Lima Siqueira
BOV Player of the Match: Jackson Lima