Birkirkara joined Hibernians on the 17-point mark, three points behind leaders Balzan, as they came from behind to beat Sliema Wanderers 3-1 at the National Stadium on Sunday.
This was the fourth win in five matches for the team led by Giovanni Tedesco and the second consecutive defeat for Stephen Azzopardi’s side. They remain fourth from bottom on ten points.
The Wanderers had three changes from the team which lost to Floriana as Entonjo Elezaj, Aidan Friggieri and John Mintoff replaced Glenn Zammit, Johann Bezzina and Michael Mifsud. Mauricio Mazzetti and Juan Quero Barroso replaced Gareth Sciberras and Marcelina Emerson for Birkirkara.
Sliema forged ahead on the 19th minute when Gary Muir served Alex Muscat from the left and the latter’s first-time effort from outside the area beat goalkeeper Justin Haber.
Six minutes in the second half, Birkirkara levelled matters when Liliu was brought down inside the area by Marko Potezica and from the penalty spot, Fabrizio Miccoli converted.
Three minutes later, the Stripes forged ahead when off an erratic pass by Clifford Gatt Baldacchino for Luke Dimech, Vito Plut gained possession and served Liliu who slotted the ball past the Sliema custodian.
Birkirkara increased the lead on the 74th when Miccoli released substitute Ryan Camenzuli on the left and the latter rounded a defender before hitting past Elezaj.
SLIEMA Entonjo Elezaj, Alex Muscat (82′ Ryan Dalli), John Mintoff (64′ Michael Mifsud), Mark Scerri, Clifford Gatt Baldacchino, Marko Potezica (59′ Peter Xuereb), Aidan Jake Friggieri, Rafael Pompeo Rodrigues Ledesma, Gary Muir, Stefano Bianciardi, Luke Dimech.
Subs not used: Glenn Zammit, Justin Vella, Benjamin Essel, Kerlon Moura Souza.
Coach: Stephen Azzopardi
B’KARA Justin Haber, Cain Attard, Zach Muscat, Mauricio Matias Latini Mazzetti, Joseph Zerafa, Paul Fenech, Rowen Muscat (80′ Gareth Sciberras), Juan Quero Barroso (62′ Ryan Camenzuli), Fabrizio Miccoli (75′ Marcelina Emerson), Ellinton Antonio Costa Morais, Vito Plut.
Subs not used: Ini Etim Akpan, Ryan Scicluna, Edmond Agius, Frank Temile.
Coach: Giovanni Tedesco
Referee: Alan Mario Sant
Assistant Referee: Duncan Sultana, Luke Portelli
Fourth Official: Mario Apap
Yellow Cards: Potezica, Miccoli, Mintoff, Scerri, Xuereb
Scorers: 19′ Alex Muscat, 51′ Fabrizio Miccoli pen, 54′ Ellinton Antonio Costa Morais, 74′ Ryan Camenzuli
BOV Player of the Match: Zach Muscat