Daniel Mariano Bueno scored one of the fastest goals ever in top-level football in Malta as he put Tarxien Rainbows ahead on 23 seconds and doubled the score just one minute and twenty-two seconds later as the Rainbows defeated Hamrun Spartans 3-1.
Although these two goals were definitely a cold shower for the Spartans, they soon hit back although it was only after the break they managed to reduce the gap. But a stoppage-time goal ensured Tarxien took the three points home.
These three points enable Tarxien to keep the pace with leaders Valletta, leaving Hamrun four points behind them.
Tarxien lacked Orosco Anonam and Ryan Grech. Martin Hrubsa and Roderick Fenech returned for the Spartans after missing the game against Qormi
Just after the kick-off, on 23 seconds, Bueno received a through pass and he managed to beat Omar Borg from close range.
After one minute and 45 seconds, the Brazilian striker scored the second goal as he received a perfect pass by Luke Vella Critien and with a shot from the edge of the area
On the 10th, a freekick by Massimo Grima from the left ended high. A corner by David Camilleri was cleared off the goal line two minutes later. A header by Massimo Grima off a cross from the left by Marcelo Pereira, scraped past the post on the 14th.
Another header by Massimo Grima on 24 minutes was parried by the Tarxien goalkeeper. On 41 minutes, a Ryan Fenech freekick was partially saved by David Cassar and off the rebound, a series of shots were blocked by the Rainbows’ rear-guard until the ball was cleraed into a corner.
Seven minutes in the second half, Cristiano released Mark Tanti on the left but the latter hit incredibly high. On the other side of the pitch, Massimo Grima headed the ball down for Gaetan Spiteri who failed to connect from close range.
The Spartans pulled one back on 58 minutes when off a Steve Bonnici cross from the right, Massimo Grima headed the ball home past goalkeeper David Cassar.
On 66 minutes, Bueno went close to increasing the score but his close-range effort was palmed out by goalkeeper Omar Borg. David Cassar managed to block a cross shot from the left by Gaetan Spiteri and off the rebound, Steve Bonnici’s powerful drive ended high.
Two minutes from time, a powerful shot by Massimo Grima from outside the area hit the upright with Cassar beaten.
Three minutes in added time, Tarxien sealed the issue with a third goal as Ricardo Costa beat the Hamrun goalkeeper with a fine header following a Sergio Pacheco De Oliveira freekick.
Luke Vella Critien was voted BOV Player of the Match.
Photos: Copyright © www.stephengatt.com
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TARXIEN David Cassar, Manuel Caruana (81′ Steven Sadowski), Everton Antonio Pereira, Cristiano Dos Santos Rodrigues, Sergio Pacheco De Oliveira, Mark Tanti (61′ Sergio Hili), Daniel Mariano Bueno (66′ Ricardo Costa), Luke Vella Critien, Ryan Mintoff, Lee Galea, Justin Grioli.
Subs not used: Anthony Curmi, Andre Farrugia, Gianluca Calabretta, Julian Vella.
Coach: Noel Coleiro
HAMRUN Omar Borg, Massimo Grima, Roderick Fenech, Ryan Fenech, Marcelo Pereira, Gaetan Spiteri, Jovan Vukanic, Martin Hrubsa, David Camilleri, Steve Bonnici, Peter Anizoba.
Subs not used: Ivan Casha, Craig Debattista, Aaron Attard, Mead Mifsud, Karl Magro, Daniel Zerafa, Larson Agius.
Coach: Steve D’Amato
Referee: Marco Borg
Assistant Referees: Philip Agius, Malcolm Mercieca
Fourth Official: Trustin Farrugia Cann
Yellow Cards: D. Bueno, J. Grioli, M. Caruana, Rod. Fenech, P. Anizoba
Scorers: 23″ Daniel Mariano Bueno (T); 1’45” Daniel Mariano Bueno (T); 58′ Massimo Grima (H); 90+3′ Ricardo Costa (T)