Naxxar Lions registered their first win in the BOV Premier League as they defeated Pietà Hotspurs 4-0. A win which enables them to close in on the Hotspurs, moving to just one point behind them, despite still lying second from bottom.
For the Hotspurs, this was a most disappointing result after winning two of their last three matches. This was also their largest defeat so far in this Premier League campaign.
Naxxar welcomed back Andrew Scicluna while Pablo Doffo was included as a substitute but David Alejandro Reano was ruled out through suspension. Pietà, on the other hand, had Claudio Frances and Leonardo Fortunato back in their starting line-up.
The Lions held the initiative and following a good run down on the left by Gilmar, he crossed the ball for Pape Gueye who however failed to connect on the 3rd minute while on the 27th, Gueye just missed after a good cross by Emenike was cleared by the Pietà defence. Three minutes from the end of the first half, Rafael Xavier’s effort went way over the post following a cross by Gabriel.
Naxxar took the lead just before half-time when off a throw-in by Emenike, Ibok Edet headed the ball towards Daren Falzon who beat David Cassar with another header.
Seven minutes in the second half, Uchenna Emenike Mbachu concluded a good run on the left with a fierce diagonal shot which beat David Cassar when many were expected a cross.
Naxxar increased the lead on the 79th when off a cross by Emenike, substitute Terene Vella, who had just replaced Pape Gueye, tipped the ball past Cassar.
Three minutes later, Uchenna Emenike Mbachu sealed the issue with a fourth goal, concluding another good run with a diagonal shot from inside the area which gave the Pietà goalkeeper no chance.
PIETÀ David Cassar, Cleaven Cassar (60’ Luke Micallef), Christian Grech, Leonardo Fortunato dos Santos (77’ Malcolm Licari), Jurgen Pisani, Nicola Tasic (56’ Claudio Frances), Cain Attard, Rafael Rodrigues da Silva, Kyle Cesare, Joao Gabriel Da Silva, Rafael Xavier Zacarias.
Subs not used: Miguel Montford, Terence Agius, Orosco Nbubisi Anonam, Dylan Agius.
Coach: Noel Coleiro
NAXXAR Julian Azzopardi, Angus Buhagiar, Ryan Gilmour Cassar, Gilmar da Silva Ribeiro, Mattia Del Negro (66’ Victor Bellia), Emmanuel Ibok Edet, Uchenna Mbachu Eminike, Daren Falzon, Sidney Fraga Nery da Silva (17’ Pablo Doffo), Papa Gueye (78’ Terrence Vella), Andrew Scicluna.
Subs not used: Luke Pecorella, Jurgen Debono, Ryan Mercieca, Yaron Sammut.
Coach: Jesmond Zerafa
Referee: Trustin Farrugia Cann
Assistant Referees: Roberto Vella, Jurgen Spiteri
Fourth Official: Sandro Spiteri
Yellow Cards: Attard, Doffo
Scorers: 44’ Daren Falzon, 52’ Uchenna Emenike Mbachu, 79’ Terrence Vella, 82′ Uchenna Emenike Mbachu
BOV Player of the Match: Uchenna Mbachu Emineke
Renato Vella reporting from Victor Tedesco Stadium