Five Premier League clubs and Gozitan side Kercem Ajax secured a place in the fourth round of the U*BET FA Trophy after emerging as winners in six third round matches on Tuesday.
At the Sirens Stadium, Kercem Ajax came back from one goal down to beat Second Division side Mdina Knights 5-1.
Emilio Cornago San Pedro out the Knights ahead on the 5th minute but Kercem soon turned the score in their favour with a brace by John Camilleri on the 15th and 32nd. Ian Xuereb made it 3-1 on 34 minutes and two minutes from the end of the first half, a direct freekick by Petar Khumyurdzhiev made it 4-1. On the hour, Joseph Chetcuti made it 5-1 with a diagonal shot from the right. Ten minutes from time, Mdina were reduced to ten men after having Stephen place sent off by referee Jude Amin Utulu.
MDINA Mark Aquilina, Eric Sciberras, Kurt Farrugia, Dalton Caruana (75′ Gilbert Camilleri), Justin Buhagiar, Emilio Cornago San Pedro, Robert Southward (64′ Andrea Muscat), Nicholas Micallef, Ayrton Buhagiar, Daniel Cremona (64′ Adrian Gatt), Stephen Place.
KERCEM Leonard Camilleri, Petar Kyumyurdzhiev, Keith Bonello, Manuel Tabone, Mario Mifsud, Andrew Mizzi (83′ Sabri Rais), Ian Xuereb (67′ Aaron Buttigieg), Karol Mifsud, John Camilleri, Malcolm Vella (72′ Owen Spiteri), Joseph Chetcuti.
Referee: Jude Amin Utulu
In the fourth round, Kercem Ajax will be facing Rabat Ajax who turned defeat into victory as they beat hosts Sirens 3-1 in the other match at the Sirens Stadium.
Sirens managed to take the lead after just forty-five seconds thanks to prolific scorer Giovanni Galea who concluded a good run with a diagonal shot from the right which beat Jonathan Azzopardi.
The Magpies levelled matters on 38 minutes thanks to a direct freekick by Dani Pelaez which beat the Sirens custodian. Rabat took the lead on 62 minutes thanks to another direct freekick, this time by Diego Carrillo. Seven minutes from time, another direct freekick by Dani Pelaez sealed the issue for the Ajax.
SIRENS Jake Schembri, Adam Debattista, Daniel Sant, Kristian Galea, Ryan Theuma (88′ Calum Muscat), George Falzon, Justin Zammit, Adrian Neda (49′ Marlon Vella), Ricardo Goncalves Severino (86′ Mario Capel), Giovanni Galea, Lee Joe Schembri.
RABAT Jonathan Azzopardi, Shaun Gauci, David Azzopardi, Josef Tonna, Ivan Carapic, Daniel Pelaez Bellido, Joseph Caruana, Moises Avila Perez, Malcolm Licari (73′ Aidan Azzopardi), Diego Carrillo Pendas, Ryan Micallef (85′ Wayne Borg).
Referee: Glenn Tonna
At the Victor Tedesco Stadium, Balzan defeated First Division side Birzebbuga St. Peter’s 5-2.
Andrew Scicluna put Balzan ahead after just four minutes. Erjon Beu doubled the score on the half-hour. Paul Camilleri committed an own goal on the 38th and one minute later, Ryan Darmanin made it 4-0. The Saints reduced the gap on 63 minutes thanks to Pierre Grima and a penalty by Claudio Calleja on the 77th but Ryan Darmanin scored a fifth goal for Balzan six minutes from time.
Balzan meet Sliema Wanderers or Zebbug Rangers in the next round.
BIRZEBBUGA Christian Cassar, Pierre Grima, Martin Hrubsa, Julian Briffa (58′ Ryan Zammit), Kevin Borg, Paul Camilleri, Darrell Grech, Felix Peplow, Claudio Calleja, Martin Deyanov (58′ Jean Carlo Da Silva), Ronnie Celeste (82′ Gary Caruana).
BALZAN Guilherme Lorenzi Schelski, Justin Grioli, Rodrigo Pereira, Andrew Scicluna, Aaron Agius, Fabio Vignaroli, Michael Borg, Godwin McKay, Erjon Beu (46′ Dylan Grima), Gianluca Calabretta, Ryan Darmanin.
Referee: Mario Apap
In another match, Birkirkara defeated Vittoriosa Stars 4-1 in a clash between two Premier League sides.
Oscar Guerrero put the Stars ahead on 15 minutes but Ryan Scicluna equalised on 35 minutes. Three minutes later, Terence Vella made it 2-1. Birkirkara had Edward Herrera sent off but the Stripes still added another two goals thanks to Terence Vella on 64 minutes and Ryan Camenzuli on 70 minutes.
The Stripes face St. Andrews in the fourth round.
BIRKIRKARA Justin Haber (78′ Reuben Gauci), Edward Herrera, Matheus Bissi, Nikola Vukanac, Paul Fenech, Joseph Zerafa, Zach Muscat, Daniel Zerafa, Jhonnattann Benites da Conceicao (78′ Frank Temile), Terence Vella (65′ Ryan Camenzuli), Ryan Scicluna.
VITTORIOSA Sean Cini, Adam Spiteri (67′ Clive Spiteri), Marcio Teruel, Ryan Mifsud, Marcelo Pereira, Ramon dos Santos, Michael Camilleri, Malcolm Buttigieg, Oscar Guerrero, Oluwafunmi Omoboy Ebiesuwa (70′ Siraj Arab), Clive Brincat (73′ Justin Camilleri).
Referee: Fyodor Zammit
Naxxar Lions defeated First Division side Gudja United 3-0 at the Centenary Stadium.
Daren Falzon put the Lions ahead on the 10th minute and three minutes from the end of the first half, Gilmar da Silva Ribeiro doubled the score. Another goal by Gilmar on 58 minutes sealed the issue for Winston Muscat’s side.
Naxxar meet Floriana or Victoria Hotspurs in the fourth round.
NAXXAR Julian Azzopardi, Victor Bellia (67′ Jurgen Debono), Marlon Briffa (61′ Mattia Del Negro), Angus Buhagiar, Ryan Gilmour Cassar, Gilmar da Silva Ribeiro, Pablo Doffo, Daren Falzon (75′ John Debono), Thiago Lopes de Souza, Evaldo Silva dos Santos, Ousseni Zongo.
GUDJA Nicola Tarquini, Cleavon Portelli, Clint Farrugia, Dylan D’Agostino, Ranier Buhagiar, Filippo Andrea Scozzese, Ryan Dalli (69′ Gary Cauchi), Karl Azzopardi (83′ Glenn Debattista), Anthony Ewurum (46′ Steve Agius), Daniele Buzzacchero, Matthew Groves.
Referee: Paul Caruana
Holders Hibernians scored four in the final twenty minutes to beat Senglea Athletic 6-1 in another match at the Centenary Stadium.
Clayton Failla put the Paolites ahead on 21 minutes and Jean Paul Farrugia doubled the score on 37 minutes. Audgustine James Obaje pulled one back for Senglea on 65 minutes but Hibernians hit back with four goals. Edison Luis dos Santos made it 3-1 on 71 minutes. Clayton Failla scored the fourth goal on 81 minutes and a brace by substitute Jurgen Degabriele on 83 and 90 minutes increased the lead further for the Paolites.
Hibs face Pietà in the fourth round.
HIBS Jurgen Borg, Ryan Camilleri (46′ Bjorn Kristensen), Jonathan Pearson, Jackson Lima (83′ Brandon Muscat), Rodolfo Soares, Andrew Cohen, Clayton Failla, Zoran Levnaic, Matthew Bartolo, Edison Luis dos Santos, Jean Paul Farrugia (75′ Jurgen Degabriele).
SENGLEA Luke Bonnici, Simon Aquilina, Rodney Galea, Rennie Tanti, Justin Spiteri, Kurt Formosa, Mark Tanti, Vince Camilleri (79′ Trevor Thomas), Timmy Thomas, Brady Zerafa (84′ Tyrone Thomas), Audgustine James Obaje.
Referee: Philip Farrugia
The other third round matches will be played on Wednesday as follows:
18:00 Mellieha vs Tarxien Rainbows (Centenary Stadium)
20:15 Sliema Wanderers vs Zebbug Rangers (Centenary Stadium)
18:00 Floriana vs Victoria Hotspurs (Sirens Stadium)
20:15 Qormi vs SK Victoria Wanderers (Sirens Stadium)
18:00 Melita vs Valletta (Victor Tedesco Stadium)
20:15 Lija Athletic vs Mosta (Victor Tedesco Stadium)