Mosta moved an important step towards securing a place in the Championship Pool as they defeated Floriana 1-0 in a direct clash despite playing for almost half an hour in ten men.
The Blues moved fifth on 29 points, two ahead of Naxxar, seven ahead of Balzan and eight ahead of Floriana. With three games to go for the end of the first phase, the Greens’s chances of securing a top-six finish are quite limited.
Floriana lacked Andre Scicluna while Lukas Duriska and Dyson Falzon were missing for Mosta.
The Blues held the initiative during the first half, having the first attempt at goal on the 10th minute with a Kurt Zammit low shot which was deflected into a corner by Hanford. On the 28th, Manolito Micallef sent Giammarco Piccioni through but the latter’s conclusion was parried by the Welsh goalkeeper. Piccioni then missed a good opportunity, when served by Zammit, having a close-range shot blocked by Hanford into a corner.
Seventeen minutes in the second half, Gianmarco Piccioni had another opportunity to put Mosta ahead but his conclusion from teh left was neutralised by the Floriana goalkeeper.
The Blues were reduced to ten men on 65 minutes when Gianmarco Piccioni kicked an opponent.
However Mosta managed to take the lead on 77 minutes when Daniel Hanford managed to save partially a fine effort by Diego Pereira, Kurt Zammit took the loose ball and had a first attempt blocked by Emmanuel Ibok Edet but the young Mosta midfielder regained possession and after having a first attempt blocked by the goalkeeper, he placed the ball at the back of the net.
MOSTA Omar Borg, Tyrone Farrugia, Mark Brincat, Ishmael Grech, Jonas Rodriguez Ekani, Kurt Zammit (85′ Kane Farrugia), Ryan Grech, Manolito Micallef, Cristian Martins Fernandes (58′ Yuri de Jesus Messias), Bojan Kaljevic (46′ Diego Pereira), Gianmarco Piccioni.
Subs not used: Kurt Rizzo, Alex Cini, Steve Schembri, James Brincat.
Coach: Enrico Piccioni
FLORIANA Daniel Hanford, Emmanuel Ibok Edet, Steve Pisani, Christian Caruana, Diogo Pinheiro de Sousa, Clyde Borg (73′ Isaac Galea), Joseph Borg, Luca Casha (56′ Brooke Farrugia), Rodrigo Felix Aguiar, Gary Muir (56′ Igor Coronado), Sacha Borg.
Subs not used: Sean Mintoff, Sunday Eboh, Darrell Baldacchino, Jonathan Xerri.
Coach: Ian Dawes
Referee: Alan Mario Sant
Assistant Referees: Edward Spiteri, Luke Portelli
Fourth Official: Clayton Pisani
Yellow Cards: J. Borg, C. Borg, J. Ekani, D. Pereira, R. Grech
Scorers: 77′ Kurt Zammit
BOV Player of the Match: Daniel Hanford