Champions Valletta bounced back from the defeat to Hibernians with a most comfortable 5-0 win over Sliema Wanderers. The Citizens scored four in the first half, adding another one after the break.
For the Wanderers, this was yet another disappointing result as they continue to chase their first win after five matches.
Valletta lacked Jonathan Caruana and Steve Borg with Abdelkarim Nafti and Shaun Bajada also left out of the starting line-up. Llywelyn Cremona, Alex Terra and Adrian Zahra made it to the start while Hamza Barry, on his return from Tunisia, was included as a substitute. Sliema coach Alfonso Greco named Filippo Talato in the starting line-up with new signing Fabio Mangiacasale starting on the bench. Talato and Beppe Muscat replaced Andrea Pisanu and Luca Martinelli.
The Wanderers had the first attempt at goal on the 10th minute with Guy Gnabouyou testing Nicky Vella with a shot from close range which was parried by the Valletta custodian. Five mintues later, Lateef Elford-Alliyu missed an incredible chance from close following an inviting cross by Llywelyn Cremona.
Valletta took the lead on the 18th when off a cross by Ryan Fenech, Adrian Zahra headed the ball home past goalkeeper Glenn Zammit.
Five minutes later, Adrian Zahra doubled the score, once again heading the ball past Zammit, this time when served by Lateef Elford-Alliyu.
On the 24th minute, Valletta scored the third goal through Brazilian striker Alex Terra when served by Elford-Alliyu.
Seven minutes from the end of the first half, Filippo Talato brought Adrian Zahra down inside the area. From the penalty spot, Ryan Fenech converted.
Nine minutes in the second half, Llywelyn Cremona served Alex Terra inside the area and the latter hit low past Zammit for Valletta’s fifth goal.
Luke Montebello could have added another six minutes from time but his curved shot from the left, on the edge of the area, ended just wide.
SLIEMA Glenn Zammit, Marko Potezica (46′ Fabio Mangiacasale), John Mintoff, Mark Scerri, Michael Mifsud, Filippo Talato, Clifford Gatt Baldacchino, Guy Gnabouyou, Paltemio Barbetti, Beppe Muscat, Stefano Bianciardi.
Subs not used: Daniel Balzan, Luca Martinelli, Iousef Meli, Trevor Cila, Peter Xuereb, Carl Cassar.
Coach: Alfonso Greco
VALLETTA Nicky Vella, Ian Azzopardi, Ryan Camilleri, Ryan Fenech (67′ Hamza Barry), Hugo Faria, Roderick Briffa (82′ Daniel Camilleri), Lateef Elford Alliyu (46′ Luke Montebello), Llywelyn Cremona, Alex Barboza Terra, Adrian Zahra, Luke Dimech.
Subs not used: Yenz Cini, Raphael Kooh Sohna, Dario Tabone, Shaun Bajada.
Coach: Gilbert Agius
Referee: Adrian Azzopardi
Assistant Referees: Thomas Debono, David Castillo
Fourth Official: Trustin Farrugia Cann
Yellow Cards: Scerri
Scorers: 18′ Adrian Zahra, 23′ Adrian Zahra, 24′ Alex Terra, 39′ Ryan Fenech pen, 54′ Alex Terra
BOV Player of the Match: Adrian Zahra