Sliema Wanderers and Floriana earned a point each as they shared the spoils in a 1-1 draw at the Victor Tedesco Stadium on Friday. A draw which leaves the Spartans in sixth place on 26 points and the Greens ninth on seventeen.
This was the second consecutive draw for Floriana who have now won just one out of the last five matches while Sliema, who were coming from a defeat to Valletta, managed to rescue a point for a positive result.
Floriana had three changes from their last outing as Alex Cini and new signings Brandon Paiber and Lucas Vieira da Silva replaced Edward Herrera, Ignacio Varela and Steve Pisani who has just left the club to join Balzan.
The Wanderers also had three changes as Kurt Shaw, Stefan Cassar and Claudio Pani were preferred to Peter Xuereb, Frank Temile and the suspended Nii Nortey Ashong.
Floriana took the lead on the 22nd minute when off a cross by Arthur Henrique Oyama from the left, Lucas Vieira da Silva headed home in style past goalkeeper Jake Galea.
The Wanderers levelled matters on the 72nd minute when off a cross by Michele Sansone from the right, Frank Temile slotted past goalkeeper Akpan.
Seven minutes from time, Claudio Pani was dismissed by referee Fyodor Zammit after receiving a second yellow card for a reckless tackle.
SLIEMA Jake Galea, Matias Muchardi (46′ Frank Temile), Kurt Shaw, Mark Scerri, Jefferson de Assis, Michele Sansone, Stefan Cassar (81′ Jonathan Pearson), Claudio Pani, Goran Adamovic, Stefano Bianciardi, Younes Marzouk (85′ Peter Xuereb).
Subs not used: Timothy Aquilina, Alex Muscat, John Mintoff, Luke Anthony Borg.
Coach: John Buttigieg
Asst. Coach: Ivan Woods
FLORIANA Ini Etim Akpan, Enzo Ruiz, Brandon Paiber (68′ Dylan Grima), Tiago Galvao da Silva, Alex Cini, Ulises Jose Arias (79′ Clyde Borg), Arthur Henrique Oyama, Ezequiel Cesani, Terence Vella, Emerson Marcelina, Lucas Vieira da Silva (73′ Daniel Agius).
Subs not used: Matthew Grech, Bradley Sciberras, Jurgen Pisani, Edward Herrera.
Coach: Guido Ugolotti
Asst. Coach: Massimo Savio
Referee: Fyodor Zammit
Assistant Referees: Roberto Vella, Duncan Sultana
Fourth Official: Philip Farrugia
Yellow Cards: Pani, Adamovic, Vella
Red Cards: 83′ Claudio Pani
BOV Player of the Match: Lucas Vieira da Silva