Balzan will be aiming for a fourth successive win on Sunday as they take on Birkirkara in one of the two BOV Premier League matches in programme at the Victor Tedesco Stadium.
Before Saturday’s games, Birkirkara shared the second place with Hibernians but following the Paolites’ draw with Floriana and Valletta’s 3-1 win over Gzira, the Stripes lie in fourth place on 13 points, six behind leaders Balzan. Therefore a win for the Stripes would put them in second place, three points behind the leaders but a win for Balzan would see Oliver Spiteri’s side extend the lead on top to eight points.
The Stripes disappointed in recent outings after collecting just four points from the last four matches, following defeats to Sliema and Pembroke, a win over Mosta and a draw with Valletta. Balzan, on the other hand, dropped just two points so far, in a draw with Valletta. In their last three games, they defeated Hibernians, Gzira and St. Andrews.
Predrag Jovic is ruled out for Birkirkara as he serves a one-match ban. Justin Grioli will be back for Balzan after missing the last game.
Meanwhile in the first match, new St. Andrews coach Danilo Doncic will be making his debut in the derby with Pembroke Athleta in the basement clash.
Two points separate the two teams with St. Andrews lying two points ahead of their rivals after winning two of the seven matches played. Pembroke, on the other hand, collected their first points in a win over Birkirkara and a draw with Tarxien after losing the first five games.
Pembroke’s Luke Montebello and St. Andrews’ Daniel Brandle are ruled out injured.