Valletta dropped two important points as they were held in a goalless draw by St. Andrews at the Victor Tedesco Stadium on Friday.
It was a highly disappointing result for the Citizens in their bid not to lose further ground with leaders Balzan and second-placed Birkirkara. On the other hand, the Saints obtain a positive result following a narrow defeat to Hibernians last week.
For Valletta, Michael Mifsud replaced Jean Borg as goalkeeper Dziugas Bartkus once again replacing the suspended Henry Bonello. On the other hand, Godwin Mckay replaced Kyrian Nwoko for St. Andrews.
Following a goalless first half, the Citizens went close with a Federico Falcone header ending just wide and a Michael Mifsud effort which was neutralised by Jake Galea.
In added time, Leandro Aguirre went close once again with a rising shot which ended just over the bar and a few seconds later, a Jhonnattann effort was parried by the St. Andrews custodian.
ST. ANDREWS Jake Galea, Michael Johnson, Karlo Kesinovic, Bong Won Che, Enmy Pena Beltre, Felix Udoh Okon, Dale Camilleri (87′ Ryan Darmanin), Joseph Farrugia, Godwin Mckay (78′ Nenad Belacevic), Ivan Paz (74′ Kyrian Nwoko), Ziga Kastrevec.
Subs not used: Dean Sciberras, Ryan Sammut, Liam Grech, Jacob Walker.
Coach: Danilo Doncic
VALLETTA Dziugas Bartkus, Jonathan Caruana, Steve Borg, Ryan Camilleri, Santiago Malano (81′ Llywelyn Cremona), Michael Mifsud, Federico Falcone, Claudio Pani, Leandro Aguirre, Jhonnattann Benites da Conceicao, Valdo Goncalves Alhinho.
Subs not used: Maverick Buhagiar, Ian Azzopardi, Russell Fenech, Jean Borg, Matthew Spiteri, Nicholas Pulis.
Coach: Paul Zammit
Referee: Esther Azzopardi
Assistant Referees: Alan Camilleri, Peter Abela
Fourth Official: Glen Tonna
Yellow Cards: Pena Beltre, Farrugia, Okon, Falcone, Pani, Kastrevec, Kesinovic
BOV Player of the Match: Bong Won Che