FA Trophy: Comfortable wins for Gzira United, Lija Athletic

First Division sides Birzebbuga St. Peter’s, Gudja United, Gzira United, Lija Athletic, St. George’s and Zurrieq and Second Division sides Gharghur and Zabbar St. Patrick secured a place in the third round of the FA Trophy as eight second round matches were played at four different venues.

St. George’s defeated St. Andrews 5-4 on penalties following a 2-2 draw at the end of extra-time in a clash between two First Division sides.

Noah Olewole put St. George’s ahead on the 10th minute but Trayo Grozev equalised on the 73rd to force extra-time. Marko Ivanovic made it 2-1 for St. Andrews on 104 minutes but seven minutes in the second half of extra-time, Gabriel Okechukwu restored equilibrium. Penalties therefore had to decide the issue with St. George’s scoring five through Mark Tanti, Rennie Tanti, Noah Olewole, Anthony Bonello and Randall Vella and St. Andrews scoring four thanks to Trayo Grozev, Joseph Farrugia, Brian Said and Matteo Desira Buttigieg.

Wisdom Ifeanyi and Gabriel Okechukwu missed two penalties for St. George’s while Emiliano Lattes, Dale Camilleri and Marko Ivanovic missed three penalties for St. Andrews.

Gzira United defeated Second Division side Ghaxaq 8-0. Yanis Tonna put the Maroons ahead on the 19th and the same player doubled the score on the half-hour. Four minutes in the second half, Ryan Dalli scored the third goal and ten minutes later, Moises Avila Perez added another. Paolo Dandolo made it 5-0 on 75 minutes and four minutes later, Sergio Moreno Marin increased the lead further. Gzira added another two goals in the final four minutes thanks to Moises Avila Perez and Gabriel Aquilina.

Second Division side Gharghur beat Gozitan First Division side St. Laurence Spurs 2-1. Muda Fagbeja gave Gharghur a two-goal lead within the first ten minutes thanks to a penalty on the 6th and another goal on the 10th. Mambaye Boye pulled one back for the Spurs on the half-hour.

First Division side Zurrieq needed extra-time to beat Second Division side Dingli Swallows 2-1. Joseph JoJo Ogunuppe was the hero for Zurrieq as he put them ahead on the 19th and although Kurt Pace equalised on the 29th to level matters, Ogunuppe notched the winner seven minutes in the first half of extra-time.

Birzebbuga St. Peter’s came from behind to beat Gozitan side Kercem Ajax 3-2 after extra-time. Nicolo Clerico put Birzebbuga ahead on the 9th minute but two goals in a minute between the 66th and 67th by Andrew Mizzi and Joseph Azzopardi turned the score in Kercem’s favour. However Birzebbuga forced extra-time with a goal one minute in added time thanks to Keith Muscat. Jeremiah Ani notched the winner six minutes in the second half of extra-time.

Gudja United beat Third Division side Mtarfa 4-0. Gudja took the lead thanks to Edile Micheletti Awoh on the 31st minute and six minutes later, Adrian Carabott doubled the score. A brace by Ryan Cauchi on 68 and 75 minutes sealed the issue.

Second Division side Zabbar St. Patrick registered a 2-1 win over Third Division side Santa Lucia. Jean Claude Cesare put Zabbar ahead on 26 minutes with Nikolay Filipov doubling the score six minutes later. Santa Lucia reduced the gap through an own goal eight minutes from the end of the first half.

In another match, Lija Athletic defeated Gozitan side Oratory Youths 7-0. Abdullhai Ige Adeshina scored three of the goals – on the 19th, 60th and 77th, Isaac McCarthy two – on the 33rd and 84th, Aiden Galea on the 75th and Cleavon Frendo a penalty on the 80th.