St. Andrews secure play-off spot as Qormi, Naxxar go down to Division 1

St. Andrews secured the play-off spot where they will be facing Senglea Athletic as they defeated Qormi 4-2 at the National Stadium in a direct clash against relegation to finish tenth as Naxxar Lions lost to Sliema Wanderers at the Hibernians Stadium.

At the National Stadium, St. Andrews managed to take the lead on the 18th minute thank to Bong Won Che whose header from the left beat goalkeeper Jean Matthias Vella.

Qormi equalised on the 26th when St. Andrews goalkeeper Jake Galea blocked a cross from the right by Noah Ojuola and Ryan Micallef headed home off the rebound.

The Saints regained the lead on the 31st when a shot from outside the area by Jonatan Perez Cuesta hit the upright and Michel Salomon Wisdom hit home off the rebound.

Two minutes later, St. Andrews increased the lead through Michel Salomon Wisdom who slotted the ball past the Qormi custodian following an assist by Kyrian Nwoko.

Qormi were however back in contention on the 40th as Terence Vella beat Jake Galea with a great freekick from the right which gave the St. Andrews goalkeeper no chance.

Jut before half-time, Terence Vella was unlucky to hit the upright from close range following a cross from the right by Ojuola.

Six minutes from time, St. Andrews made it 4-2 thanks to Jonatan Perez Cuesta who slotted the ball past Vella following a cross by Lucky Oseghale.

QORMI Jean Matthias Vella, Emerson Vella, Kurt Magro, Ryan Micallef, Alessio Cassar (77′ Juan Carlos Vieira Peixoto), Ousmane Sidibe, Noah Olawole Ojuola, Yannick Yankam (46′ Go Nagaoka), Clifford Gauci, Terence Vella, Iven Zammit (46′ Djamel Leeflang).
Subs not used: Andreas Vella, Joshua Barbara, Clint Barbara, Immy Micallef.
Coach: Johann Scicluna

ST. ANDREWS Jake Galea, Enmy Manuel Pena Beltre (89′ Jacob Walker), Eloy Edu Nkene, Bong Won Che, Jonathan Perez Cuesta, Dale Camilleri (57′ Michael Johnson), Chinatu Francis Onwudinjo, Joseph Farrugia, Lucky Victor Oseghale (86′ Liam Grech), Kyrian Nwoko, Michel Salomon Wisdom.
Subs not used: Dorian Bugeja, Matteo Desira Buttigieg, Jamie Magri Overend, Ryan Sammut.
Assistant Coach: Brian Chetcuti

Referee: Clayton Pisani
Assistant Referees: Alan Camilleri, David Castillo
Fourth Official: Esther Azzopardi
Yellow Cards: Onwudinjo, Nagaoka, Magro
Scorers: 18′ Wong Bon Che, 26′ Ryan Micallef, 31′ Eloy Edu Nkene, 33′ Michel Salomon Wisdom Mba, 40′ Terence Vella, 84′ Jonatan Perez Cuesta
BOV Player of the Match: Terence Vella

Meanwhile at the Hibernians Stadium, Naxxar Lions failed to collect any points as they lost 2-4 to Sliema Wanderers.

The Wanderers took the lead on the 34th minute when they were awarded a penalty after Jurgen Debono brought Njongo Priso down inside the area; Denni Rocha dos Santos’ effort from the penalty spot was partially saved by the Naxxar goalkeeper but the sane player placed the ball at the back of the net off the rebound.

However five minutes from the end of the first half, Naxxar equalised when Gatt Baldacchino floored Edu Vallecillo Casado inside the area and the latter converted from the penalty spot.

One minute in the second half, Naxxar went 2-1 ahead as Jurgen Debono sent Eduardo Vallecillo Casado through and the latter’s conclusion hit the foot of the upright before ending at the back of the net.

The Wanderers restored equilibrium on the 62nd minute thanks to Jean Paul Farrugia who concluded a fine solo effort by dribbling the Naxxar defence and hitting low past Gallinetta.

Three minutes later, a powerful shot by Johann Bezzina beat the Naxxar custodian to make it 3-2.

Ten minutes from time, the Blues sealed the issue with a fourth goal as Jean Paul Farrugia hit home from close range following an assist by Peter Xuereb.

SLIEMA Entonjo Elezai, Alex Muscat, Benjamin Essel (83’ Justin Vella), Njongo Priso (65’ Aiden Jake Friggieri), Clifford Gatt Baldacchino, Marko Potezica, Peter Xuereb, Johann Bezzina, Denni Rocha dos Santos, Gary Muir (56’ Michele Sansone), Jean Paul Farrugia.
Subs not used: Glenn Zammit, Armando dos Santos Tarlaziz, Arsenne Rye Cilia, Luke Dimech.
Coach: Alfonso Greco

NAXXAR Alberto Gallinetta, Andrew Scicluna, Eduardo Vallecillo Casado, Demba Toure, Jose Angel Godar Pereira (42’ Alvaro Javier Hungria Rosero), Jurgen Debono, David Fenech (74’ Duane Bonnici), Angus Buhagiar, Ennio Matthews Hamutenya, Mark Fenech, Nikola Tasic.
Subs: Gianluca Abela, Francesco Gauci, Gianluca Grima, Joel Ellul, Ryan Mercieca.
Coach: Clive Mizzi

Referee: Marco Borg
Assistant referees: Duncan Sultana, Sammy Attard
Fourth Official: Stefan Pace
Yellow Cards: Muir, Gatt Baldacchino, Priso, Tasic, Buhagiar, Gallinetta, Toure, Vallecillo
Scorers: 34’ Denni dos Santos Rocha, 40’ Eduardo Vallecillo Casado, 46’ Eduardo Vallecillo Casado, 62’ Jean Paul Farrugia, 65′ Johann Bezzina, 80’ Jean Paul Farrugia
BOV Player of the Match: Jean Paul Farrugia

Renato Vella reporting from the Hibernians Stadium