Birkirkara scored twice in the first half to claim the three points in a 2-1 win over Gzira United at the National Stadium on Sunday.
A second consecutive win for the Stripes and a fourth defeat from the last four matches for the Maroons.
Birkirkara had one change from the team which defeated Hibernians as Edward Herrera replaced Predrag Jovic. Gzira, on the other hand, had new signings Andrew Cohen and Carlos Reyna making their debut. Cohen, Reyna and Andre White replaced Jonathan Bondin, Clifford Gatt Baldacchino and Zachary Scerri from the team which had defeated Floriana last week.
The Stripes took the lead on the 16th minute when off a good run on the left by Miguel Alba, his cross was well-met buy Edward Herrera who headed the ball home from close range.
Four minutes later, Birkirkara doubled the score thanks to Mislav Andjelkovic who hit the ball home from inside the area after a cross shot by Edward Herrera was blocked.
The Maroons were reduced to ten men on 61 minutes as Souleymane Diamoutene was sent off for a late tackle on Malan.
However six minutes from time, Gzira pulled one back when they were awarded a penalty after Srdjan Dimitrov handled the ball inside the area and from the penalty spot, Andrew Cohen converted.
B’KARA Henry Bonello, Edward Herrera (56′ Gonzalo Malan), Christian Bubalovic, Gareth Sciberras, Mislav Andelkovic, Srdan Dimitrov, Vito Plut, Nikola Vukanac, Joseph Zerafa (77′ Matthew Guillaumier), Miguel Angel Alba (72′ Ryan Scicluna), Cain Attard.
Subs not used: Ini Etim Akpan, Matteo Desira Buttigieg, Edmond Agius, Steve Bonnici.
Coach: Nikola Jaros
GZIRA Jurgen Borg, Andrè White (46′ Jacob Borg), Ian Azzopardi, Souleymane Diamoutene, Andrew Cohen, Juan Carlos Corbolan, Moises Avila Perez, Louis Rene Zome, Carlos Alejandro Reyna, Antonio de Queiroz Machedo Neto, Ige Abdullahi Adeshina (46′ Zachary Scerri).
Subs not used: Anthony Curmi, Dyson Falzon, Miguel Balzan, Karl Pulo, Emerson Amaira.
Coach: Darren Abdilla
Referee: Sandro Spiteri
Assistant Referees: Duncan Sultana, William Debattista
Fourth Official: Clayton Pisani
Scorers: 16′ Edward Herrera, 20′ Mislav Andelkovic, 84′ Andrew Cohen pen
Yellow Cards: Cohen, Reyna, Tony, Bonello, Malan
Red Cards: Diamoutene
BOV Player of the Match: Mislav Andelkovic