Important wins for Tarxien, Hamrun

Tarxien Rainbows collected another three precious points as they beat Mosta 2-0 with a goal in each half. The Rainbows now lie two points ahead of Mosta.

For the Blues, this was yet another disappointing result after the draw with Hamrun Spartans and the defeat to Mqabba last week. Mosta have in fact gone four matches without a win.

Captain Everton Antonio Pereira was back for Tarxien after serving a two-match ban. Kurt Magro returned for Mosta but Steve D’Amato could not count on the suspended Gilbert Martin.

The Rainbows managed to take the lead on 17 minutes when off a pass by Daniel Mariano Bueno, Ricardo Costa beat goalkeeper Jonathan Debono with a fine shot from outside the area.

Mark Tanti almost suprised the Mosta goalkeeper with a direct freekick on 39 minutes but Debono saved in two attempts.

Tarxien doubled the score on 62 minutes when off a Mark Tanti corner from the right, Ricardo Costa headed the ball in the direction of Daniel Mariano Bueno whose attempt beat goalkeeper Jonathan Debono.

Mosta replied with a low shot from outside the area by Dyson Falzon which was parried by Nicky Vella on 68 minutes. Nine minutes later, a freekick by the former Valletta midfielder was neutralised by the Tarxien custodian. In a swift counter-attack for Tarxien on 78 minutes, Carabott served Karl Pulo whose low shot was ended just wide.

An Adrian Carabott effort ended just over the bar on 86 minutes and a few seconds later, another shot by Carabott was turned into a corner by Debono.

Ricardo Costa was voted BOV Player of the Match.

MOSTA Jonathan Debono, Adrian Borg, Kane Farrugia, Federico Tisbi (69′ Predrag Mirceta), Yannick Ossok, Florent Raimy, Jonathan Bajada (58′ Terence Vella), Kurt Magro (61′ Firas Aboulezz), Dyson Falzon, Ian Zammit, Obinna Obiefule.
Subs not used: Glenn Zammit, Luca Martinelli, Sheldon Grech, Alex Cini.
Coach: Steve D’Amato

TARXIEN Nicky Vella, Carlo Mamo, Everton Antonio Pereira, Adrian Carabott (89′ Warren Zerafa), Ricardo Costa (70′ Jimmy Nzinga Mayasi), Karl Pulo (80′ Manuel Caruana), Mark Tanti, Daniel Mariano Bueno, Luiz Romulo De Castro, Ryan Mintoff, Justin Grioli.
Subs not used: David Cassar, Steve Sadowski, Stefan Giglio, Lee Galea.
Coach: Patrick Curmi
Asst. Coach: Michael Church

Referee: Malcolm Spiteri
Assistant Referees: Joe Camilleri, William Debattista
Fourth Official: Alan Mario Sant
Yellow Cards: Magro, Zammit
Scorers: 17′ Ricardo Costa, 62′ Daniel Mariano Bueno

In the second game, Hamrun Spartans registered a second successive win as they beat rivals Qormi 1-0. The Spartans, who are the only unbeaten side in the Relegation Pool, move to just one point behind Qormi.

The team led by Stephen Azzopardi is still on top of the Relegation Pool but just five points separate them and Mosta, who are now second from bottom.

The Spartans had the first attempt at goal with an Anderson Mendes Ribeiro effort cleared off the goal line by Vincent Koaudio Adioumani on the 2nd minute.

On the 9th minute, Jorge Pereira da Silva received a perfect pass on the left and advanced into the area but his diagonal shot scraped past the post.

Qormi had an excellent opportunity to take the lead on 13 minutes when they were awarded a penalty after Matthew Bartolo was floored inside the area by Ronni Hartvig. However Joseph Farrugia’s effort was blocked by goalkeeper Omar Borg.

In a swift counter-attack for Hamrun, a close range effort by Gaetan Spiteri was blocked into a corner by Matthew Farrugia. From the resulting corner, Massimo Grima’s header was neutralised by Farrugia.

On 31 minutes, Joseph Farrugia missed another good opportunity after concluding a fine run on the left with a low shot which ended wide.

Just before half-time, attempts by Jorge Pereira da Silva and Joseph Farrugia for Qormi missed the target and in added time, a Jorginho header off a cross by Bello-Osagie scraped past the post.

Ten minutes in the second half, Massimo Grima tried his luck with a long-distance shot and a minute later in a counter attack for Qormi, Abubakar Bello-Osagie served Joseph Chetcuti but the latter hit just wide. An angled shot by Kevin Sammut from the right was deflected into a corner on 57 minutes. A Joseph Farrugia freekick from the left was then deflected into a corner by Grima.

Hamrun managed to break the deadlock on 71 minutes when off a good move by substitute Matthew Gauci on the left, he served Dene Shields who controlled the ball before hitting past Matthew Farrugia.

One minute from time, Anderson Mendes Ribeiro could have doubled the score but his header, off a cross by Matthew Gauci from the left, was parried by Farrugia. Two minutes in added time, Triston Caruana was unlucky to hit the upright with a shot from outside the area for Qormi.

Dene Shields was voted BOV Player of the Match.

HAMRUN Omar Borg, Gianluca Calabretta, David Camilleri, Steve Bonnici, Ronni Hartvig, Massimo Grima, Lee James Agius (77′ Daniel Zerafa), Anderson Mendes Ribeiro, Dene Shields, Kevin Sammut, Gaetan Spiteri (69′ Matthew Gauci).
Subs not used: Andrea Cassar, Rupert Mangion, Luke Grech, Glen Azzopardi, Diego Armando Cucciardi.
Coach: Stefan Sultana
Asst. Coach: Marco Grech

QORMI Matthew Farrugia, Roderick Sammut, Matthew Bartolo, Joseph Chetcuti, Joseph Farrugia, Jonathan Bondin, Kris Thackray, Triston Caruana, Abubakar Bello Osagie, Vincent Koaudio Adioumani.
Subs not used: Steve Sultana, Carmelo Farrugia, George Chircop, Luke Sciberras, Ranier Buhagiar, Kenneth Scicluna, Stephen Wellman.
Coach: Stephen Azzopardi

Referee: Paul Caruana
Assistant Referees: Ingmar Spiteri, Paul Apap
Fourth Official: Chris Lautier
Yellow Cards: Koaudio, Bello Osagie, Camilleri, Calabretta, Bonnici, Chetcuti
Scorers: 71′ Dene Shields
Attendance: 1,111