Birkirkara bounced back from back-to-back defeats to Valletta and Sliema Wanderers as they defeated Lija Athletic 2-0 at the Victor Tedesco Stadium on Friday.
This was only the third win for Birkirkara in eight matches while for Lija, this was the seventh defeat, leaving them at the bottom of the table with just one point and still chasing their first win.
The Stripes managed to take the lead on the 18th minute thanks to Luke Montebello whose powerful shot from the right gave goalkeeper Luke Bonnici no chance.
Three minutes from the end of the first half, Lija were unlucky not to equalise when Djamel Leeflang’s overhead kick hit the upright but on the 78th minute, they had goalkeeper Bonnici sent off for a foul on Carlos Alberto outside the area.
Birkirkara sealed the issue with a second goal on the 90th minute when substitute Fabiano Oliveira rounded a defender on the right before serving another substitute, Edward Herrera, with an inviting cross for the latter to slam the ball home past Martinelli.
LIJA Luke Bonnici, Predrag Babic, Leon Muscat, Daniel Scerri, Erjon Beu (80’ Jonathan Martinelli gk), Leejoe Schembri, Raphael Kooh Sohna, Abubakar Bello Osagie, Carl Cassar, McAllister Clinch (66’ Aiden Galea), Djamel Leeflang (76’ Joaquin Lores Varela).
Subs not used: Ousmane Sidibe, Aaron Sammut, Patrick Borg, Nigel Spiteri.
Coach: Joseph Galea
B’KARA David Cassar, Cain Attard, Nikola Vukanac, Lucas Maia, Kurt Zammit, Mislav Andjelkovic, Matthew Guillaumier, Ryan Scicluna, Jake Grech (62’ Ryan Camenzuli), Carlos Alberto da Silva Goncalves Junior (81’ Edward Herrera), Luke Montebello (73’ Fabiano Montero de Oliveira).
Subs not used: Philip Schranz, Landry Mulemo, Martin Klein, Llywelyn Cremona.
Referee: Eman Grech
Assistant Referees: Alan Camilleri, Ryan Aquilina
Fourth Official: Alan Mario Sant
Yellow Cards: Scerri
Red Cards: 78′ Luke Bonnici
BOV Player of the Match: Ryan Scicluna