The Malta Under-16 girls team began their commitments in the UEFA Youth Girls Development Tournament on a flying note after beating Gibraltar 5-1 at the Centenary Stadium, on Tuesday.
Led by coach Dorianne Theuma, the Maltese girls opened the scoring after seven minutes. Kailey Willis got on the end of Emma Philippa Ciantar’s cross to fire Malta ahead.
On 13 minutes, captain Maya Lucia doubled Malta’s lead with a curling effort from the edge of the box.
Malta remained on the top, adding three more goals before half-time.
Willis headed home from a corner from the left and went to complete her hat-trick in the 24th minute. The Birkirkara forward caught Gibraltar’s goalkeeper out of position with a delightful lob to virtually seal Malta’s victory.
Malta continued to pile the pressure on Gibraltar and on the 38th minute, Hannah Khatib darted into the box before hitting home to make it 5-0.
Gibraltar tried to make a reaction in the second half. Shania Robba almost pulled one back but Justyne Caruana was alert to avert the danger. However, Caruana could do nothing to stop Kayleigh Ferro’s cross shot on minute 44 as Gibraltar scored a consolation goal.
As the second half progressed, both coaches began introducing new faces with the Maltese team preserving their four-goal lead in a comfortable manner.
Malta’s next commitment is against Andorra on Thursday, kick-off at 11:00.
MALTA Giulia D’Antuono (41 Justyne Caruana), Haley Bugeja (41 Elena Sissons), Veronique Mifsud (36 Martina Cortis), Hannah Khatib (60 Mariah Cardona), Emma Philippa Ciantar (36 Gaia Antonelli), Kailey Willis (41 Laura Muscat), Maya Lucia, Martina Fenech (41 Alexandra Gatt), Rhea Borg (60 Laura Chetcuti Dimech), Izabella Camilleri, Georgiana Mifsud (36 Nell Zarb Cousin).
GIBRALTARCaitlin Robba, Sophia Brnkman, Tiffany Viagas, Gabriella Martinez, Kayleigh Tellez, Shania Robba (66 J. Gaivizo), Aerin Victory (54 C. Cosqueiri), Mollie Karp (34 A. Ferrell), Arwen Neale, Kayleigh Ferro (c), Reighann Mascarenhas-Olivero (54 S. Popham).
Referee: Hristos Palikarov