Qormi returned to winning ways as they defeated ten-man Tarxien Rainbows 3-0. A win which puts them just one point behind the Rainbows, Floriana and Balzan.
Although they needed two penalties to build a comfortable lead, Qormi were still a better side with the Rainbows disappointing after their win over Hibernians in their last league outing.
Photo: Copyright © Paul Zammit Cutajar
Qormi had Brazilian midfielder Joao Gabriel da Silva making his debut while Spanish midfielder Carlos Menendez Hevia was making his first league appearance for the Rainbows. Giuseppe Bellucci and Duncan Pisani were ruled out through suspension for Tommaso Volpi’s side while Fernando Lopes Alcantara and Luca Martinelli were suspended for Tarxien.
The usual Ronaille Calheira Seara had the first attempt at goal on the 8th minute but Matthew Farrugia managed to block his close-range shot.
On the 19th, Qormi went close to equalising thanks to a blunder by goalkeeper Nicky Vella who failed to clear the ball on the edge of the area but Alfred Effiong did not reach the ball in time to hit home. Tarxien replied with a header by Ronaille Calheira ending just wide off a cross by Jorge Santos Silva.
Qormi managed to take the lead on 36 minutes when they were awarded a penalty after Josef Mifsud floored Gabriel on the edge of the area and from the penalty spot, Roderick Bajada made no mistake.
Just before the end of the first half, Jorge Santos Silva hit just wide off a Carlo Mamo freekick from the left.
Four minutes in the second half, Alfred Effiong was about to conclude from close range following an inviting through pass but was brought down by goalkeeper Nicky Vella. Referee Malcolm Spiteri sent off the Tarxien goalkeeper and ordered a penalty. From the penalty spot, Alfred Effiong beat goalkeeper Anthony Curmi.
A minute later, off a Roderick Bajada corner, Gabriel hit the foot of the post from close range.
Joao Gabriel da Silva made it 3-0 on the 76th minute when he entered the penalty area from the left, beating Curmi with a diagonal shot with the ball hitting the upright before ending at the back of the net.
Substitute Dylan Pirotta went close to increasing the lead further four minutes from time but his fine first-time effort, off a cross by Leighton Grech, was parried by Curmi.
QORMI Matthew Farrugia, Alfred Effiong, Roderick Sammut, Roderick Bajada, Joao Gabriel da Silva (85′ Dylan Pirotta), Gianluca Nucera (60′ Luigi Del Giudice), Emerson Vella, Owen Bugeja, Jonathan Bondin, Leighton Grech, Marco Petrassi.
Subs not used: Steve Sultana, Riccardo Innocenti, Karl Sciortino, illmore Azzopardi, George Portelli.
Coach: Tommaso Volpi
TARXIEN Nicky Vella, Steve Sadowski (51′ Anthony Curmi), Carlo Mamo, Andrew Agius (39′ Miguel Ciantar), Marko Potezica, Ronaille Calheira Seara, Everton Souza Santos, Ryan Sammut, Carlos Menendez Hevia (75′ Karl Pulo), Josef Mifsud, Jorge Santos Silva.
Subs not used: Manuel Caruana, Go Nagaoka, Matthew Cassar, Steve Bonnici.
Coach: Clive Mizzi
Referee: Malcolm Spiteri
Assistant Referees: Alan Camilleri, Paul Apap
Additional Assistant Referees: Paul Caruana, Mario Apap
Fourth Official: Fyodor Zammit
Yellow Cards: J. Mifsud, Jorge Santos, E. Vella, O. Bugeja, M. Ciantar
Red Cards: 49′ Nicky Vella
Scorers: 36′ Roderick Bajada pen, 52′ Alfred Effiong pen, 76′ Joao Gabriel da Silva
BOV Player of the Match: Joao Gabriel da Silva