Vittoriosa Stars earned another point as they held Tarxien Rainbows in a 2-2 draw despite having a player sent off. A third successive positive result for Oliver Spiteri’s side after they managed to beat Qormi and Rabat Ajax in the previous two matches.
For Tarxien, this was also the third consecutive game in which they earned points. The two teams are joint-sixth on eight points.
Jorge Santos Silva was back for the Rainbows after serving a one-match ban but Manuel Caruana was ruled out injured. Vittoriosa, on the other hand, could not count on Clive Spiteri, Sheldon Grech, Luke Vella Critien and Roberto Brincat.
The Rainbows missed a good opportunity on the 15th when Miguel Ciantar released Ronaille Calheira Seara inside the area with the latter failing to conclude when closely marked by Ramon dos Santos. Two minutes later, Gilbert Martin’s effort from outside the penalty area ended high over the crossbar. On the 29th, Miguel Ciantar dribbled past two Vittoriosa players but his conclusion ended high. Three minutes slater, Jorge Santos Santos served Luca Martinelli whose powerful shot from outside the penalty box was deflected by goalkeeper Jean Matthias Vella into a corner.
Five minutes from the end of the first half, Tarxien took the lead when off a cross by Everton Souza Santos from the left, Ronaille Calheira Seara’s perfect header beat the Vittoriosa goalkeeper.
Vittoriosa showed better ideas after the break, equalising on the 55th minute thanks to a great goal by Gilbert Martin whose first-time effort beat Nicky Vella.
Tarxien went close on 61 minutes with a lob by Everton which ended ends a little bit high over the crossbar after being deflected by a Vittoriosa defender. Two minutes later, Gilbert Martin’s cross to Guerrero in the centre was met by the latter’s powerful shot which was deflected by the goalkeeper into a corner.
The Rainbows regained the lead on 69 minutes as Jorge Santos Silva exchanged the ball with Everton Souza Santos with the former darting inside the penalty area on the right, dribbling past the goalkeeper and placing the ball at the back of the net.
Vittoriosa were reduced to ten men after having Jose Felipe Aguiar sent off on 78 minutes.
However one minute later, Marcio Teruel sent Marcelo Pereira through and the latter’s assist put Oscar Guerrero in an ideal position to score, concluding past Nicky Vella to equalise.
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VITTORIOSA Jean Mathias Vella, Marcio Teruel, Malcolm Buttigieg (72’ Adam Spiteri), Gilbert Martin (69’ Siraj Arab Eddin), Oscar Dario Guerrero, Clive Brincat (74’ Ryan Mifsud), Michael Camilleri, Lucas Ramon Dos Santos, Marcela Pereira, Jose Felipe Aguiar, Samir Arab.
Subs not used: Matthew Camilleri, Justin Camilleri, Mark Barbara, Liam Gauci.
Coach: Oliver Spiteri
TARXIEN Nicholas Vella, Carlo Mamo, Fernando Lopez Alcantara, Andrew Agius, Luca Martinelli, Ronallie Caiheira Seara, Miguel Ciantar (72’ Karl Pulo), Everton Souza Santos (74’ Ryan Sammut), Josef Mifsud, Steven Bonnici, Jorge Santos Silva.
Subs not used: Anthony Curmi, Steven Sadowski, Marko Potezica, Silas Caruana, Nigel Vella.
Coach: Clive Mizzi
Referee: Andre Arciola
Assistant Referees: Alan Camilleri, Thomas Debono
Additional Assistant Referees: Marco Borg, Glen Tonna
Fourth Official: Edward Spiteri
Yellow Cards: S. Bonnici, J.F. Aguiar, O. Guerrero, M. Camilleri, F. Alcantara, M. Teruel.
Red Cards: J.F. Aguiar
Scorers: 40’ Ronaille Caiheira Seara (T), 55’ Gilbert Martin (V), 69’ Jorge Santos Silva (T), 79’ Oscar Dario Guerrero (V)
BOV Player of the Match: Oscar Dario Guerrero
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At the Victor Tedesco Stadium, Balzan and Floriana shared the spoils in a goalless draw.
Balzan, for the first time under the guidance of Jesmond Zerafa, lacked Firas Aboulezz while Sunday Eboh was missing for Floriana.
The first goal-scoring opportunity fell at the feet of Jose Luis Armario Negrin on the 23rd minute but Andre Scicluna cleared the ball into safety. Floriana replied with a Daniel Bogdanovic freekick which ended just wide on 27 minutes. On the half-hour, Dani Miguelez turned into a corner a Bogdanovic effort after a cross by Coronado was deflected by Steve Pisani. Four minutes later, Clyde Borg hit high from the edge of the area when served by Coronado from the right.
Eight minutes in the second half, substitute Luca Casha just failed to connect off an inviting cross by Pisani.
Dylan Grima then had a shot from close range blocked into a corner by Daniel Hanford on 77 minutes.
Finally deep into stoppage time, Dani Miguelez performed a good save on a close-range effort by substitute Diogo Pinheiro.
BALZAN Daniel Miguelez Martinez, Justin Grioli, Steve Bezzina, Andrew Scicluna, Rodrigo Frank Pereira, Fabio Vignaroli, Luke Sciberras, Dylan Grima, Erjon Beu (63′ Mark Spiteri), Gianluca Calabretta (90′ Lydon Micallef), Jose Luis Armario Negrin (79′ Ryan Darmanin).
Subs not used: Michael Falzon, Godwin Mackay, Michael Borg, Aaron Agius.
Coach: Jesmond Zerafa
FLORIANA Daniel Hanford, Andre Scicluna, Daniel Bogdanovic, Gary Roberts, Igor Coronado (69′ Diogo Pinheiro de Souza), Steve Pisani (75′ Christian Caruana), Clyde Borg, Joseph Borg, Brooke Farrugia (38′ Luca Casha), Gary Muir, Emmanuel Ibok Edet.
Subs not used: Sean Mintoff, Francesco Guzman, Isaac Galea, Sacha Borg.
Coach: Ian Dawes
Referee: Adrian Azzopardi
Assistant Referees: Roberto Vella, Albert Borg Cardona
Fourth Official: Mario Apap
Yellow Cards: Rodrigo, Negrin, Idet, C. Borg
BOV Player of the Match: Emmanuel Idet Ebok