Mosta claim precious points in battle against relegation

Mosta collected three precious points in the battle against relegation as they registered a 2-0 win over Qormi.

The Yellows showed better ideas and although they had a player sent off early in the second half, they could have taken the lead through a penalty. However they missed the penalty and a few minutes later, Mosta took the lead thanks to another penalty.

The Blues therefore take home the three points which put them just two points behind Qormi and Hamrun, one ahead of Tarxien and two ahead of Mqabba.

For Qormi, coach Stephen Azzopardi could not count on Joseph Farrugia and Abubakar Bello-Osagie.

Goal-mouth action was rare during the first half. Qormi had the first attempt at goal on the 29th minute thanks to a great freekick by Jorge Pereira da Silva which was neutralised by Matthew Farrugia. Two minutes from the end of the first half, Jorge Pereira went close once again with a powerful drive when served on the left by Luke Sciberras.

Three minutes in the second half, Gilbert Martin concluded a good run on the left with a rising shot from a close angle which hit the crossbar. A fine effort by Jorge Pereira, direct from a corner, was blocked by Debono two minutes later. A freekick by Triston Caruana was tipped into a corner by the Mosta custodian on 52 minutes.

Qormi midfielder Luke Sciberras was sent off on 54 minutes for a rough tackle on Federico Tisbi.

However two minutes later, Qormi were awarded a rather dubious penalty when Jorge Pereira ended on the ground when marked by Tisbi. However Kris Thackray’s effort from the penalty spot was neutralised by the Mosta goalkeeper.

Mosta finally managed to break the deadlock on 65 minutes when Gilbert Martin was brought down inside the area by Roderick Sammut. Referee Fyodor Zammit ordered a penalty and Obinna Obiefule made no mistake.

Substitute George Chircop concluded a good run on the right flank with a diagonal shot ending wide on 71 minutes for Qormi. A powerful shot by Thackray was then turned into a corner by Jonathan Debono six minutes later.

Jonathan Bajada almost took advantage of an erratic clearance by a Qormi defender on 82 minutes but Matthew Farrugia blocked his attempt. A minute later, Obiefule tried his luck with a cute lob from outside the area but the ball ended just wide.

Mosta doubled the score on the 90th thanks to Kurt Magro who won an aerial duel with a defender and beat goalkeeper Matthew Farrugia with a fine diagonal shot from the right.

Jonathan Debono was voted BOV Player of the Match.

MOSTA Jonathan Debono, Adrian Borg, Federico Tisbi, Yannick Ossok, Alex Cini, Jonathan Bajada, Kurt Magro, Predrag Mirceta (46′ Florent Raimy), Dyson Falzon (92′ Firas Aboulezz), Gilbert Martin (89′ Ian Zammit), Obinna Obiefule.
Subs not used: Kurt Rizzo, Kane Farrugia, Bryan Agius, Sheldon Grech.
Coach: Steve D’Amato

QORMI Matthew Farrugia, Roderick Sammut (72′ Stephen Wellman), Matthew Bartolo, Joseph Chetcuti (81′ Ranier Buhagiar), Luke Sciberras, Kenneth Scicluna, Jonathan Bondin (44′ George Chircop), Jorge Pereira da Silva, Kris Thackray, Triston Caruana, Vincent Koaudio Adioumani.
Subs not used: Steve Sultana, Carmelo Farrugia, Jeremy Farrugia, Christian Briffa.

Referee: Fyodor Zammit
Assistant Referees: Paul Apap, Roberto Vella
Fourth Official: Marco Borg
Yellow Cards: Mirceta, Sammut, Martin, Borg
Red Cards: 54′ Luke Sciberras
Scorers: 65′ Obinna Obiefule, 90′ Kurt Magro
Attendance: 1,093

Hamrun Spartans maintained a four-point lead over Mqabba after holding them in a goalless draw.

Mqabba held the initiative for long stretches but failed to turn their superiority into goals. Therefore Hamrun managed to extend their positive run in the Relegation Pool to five matches without defeat.

The Spartans lacked Gaetan Spiteri and Dene Shields but welcomed back Steve Bonnici. David Fenech was missing for Mqabba as he serves a one-match ban.

Bojan Mamic went close to putting Mqabba on the 10th minute when he received a cross from the right and rounded Calabretta but hit just wide. Marlon Briffa then sent John Nwoba through inside the area but the latter’s conclusion just missed the target.

On the other side of the pitch, Ryan Spiteri served Gianluca Calabretta whose powerful on 33 minutes. John Nwoba then missed a good opportunity hitting wide off an inviting cross by Mauro Bonnici from the left on 41 minutes. John Nwoba had a fine shot from outside the area turned into a corner by Omar Borg one minute from the end of the first half.

Twenty minutes in the second half, John Nwoba headed just wide for Mosta when served by Timotic. Six minutes later, Timotic missed the target with a header from close range following a Claudio Calleja freekick.

On 83 minutes, Ryan Spiteri hit wide for Hamrun when served by an Anderson Ribeiro cross from the right.

Marko Potezica was voted BOV Player of the Match.

HAMRUN Omar Borg, Gianluca Calabretta, David Camilleri, Steve Bonnici, Ronni Hartvig, Massimo Grima (61′ Daniel Zerafa), Lee James Agius, Kevin Sammut, Ryan Spiteri, Anderson Mendes Ribeiro, Matthew Gauci.
Subs not used: Andrea Cassar, Rupert Mangion, Ayrton Micallef, Glenn Azzopardi, Luke Grech, Roderick Fenech.
Coach: Stefan Sultana
Asst. Coach: Marco Grech

MQABBA Kris Calleja, Julian Briffa, Mark Anthony Psaila, Branislav Timotic, Pierre Grima, Claudio Calleja, Marko Potezica, Mauro Bonnici, David Azzopardi (84′ John Paul Muscat), Bojan Mamic (80′ Thiago dos Santos Mazzitelli), John Nwoba.
Subs not used: Franklin Azzopardi, Rene Duca, Ryan Sammut, Clayton Micallef, Marlon Briffa.
Coach: Clive Mizzi
Asst. Coach: Renzo Kerr Cumbo

Referee: Kevin Azzopardi
Assistant Referees: Mitchell Scerri, Joe Camilleri
Fourth Official: Andre Arciola
Yellow Cards: Briffa, Ribeiro, D. Azzopardi, Timotic, Hartvig, Potezica