Wanderers, Rainbows share spoils in draw

Sliema Wanderers and Tarxien Rainbows shared the spoils in a 1-1 draw in a mid-table clash at the Hibernians Stadium on Tuesday.

Following the resignation of Jesmond Zerafa last Thursday, Triston Caruana was leading the Rainbows as player coach, assisted by Brian Testaferrata. They had two changes from the team which drew with Hamrun as Kurt Zammit and Daniel Ponce de Leon replaced Dylan Micallef and Triston Caruana with the latter focussing more on his new role.

The Wanderers, on the other hand, had Jonathan Pearson, Peter Xuereb and Salomon Wisdom replacing Gabriel Aquilina, Leonardo Incorvaia and Ryan Spiteri.

Sliema took the lead on the 11th minute when Peter Xuereb served Wisdom Salomon on the left and the latter hit low past goalkeeper Andrea Cassar.

Tarxien went close to equalising with a fine curved shot by Daniel Ponce de Leon Garcia which ended just over the bar on the 17th minute.

However they managed to level matters on the 40th thanks to a great freekick by Emerson Marcelina which gave goalkeeper Sarao no chance.

Five minutes in the second half, Daniel Ponce de Leon tested the Italian goalkeeper with a freekick from the right. Tarxien then threatened Sarao with a direct freekick by Alex da Paixao which ended just over the bar on the 59th minute. Three minutes later, Ponce had an excellent opportunity when served all alone on the right but the Sliema goalkeeper neutralised his attempt.

The Rainbows were reduced to ten men on the 66th minute after Ebiabowei Baker picked a second yellow card for a foul just outside the area.

Four minutes from time, Ryan Spiteri tried his luck with a powerful shot from the edge of the area but Cassar turned the ball into a corner.

SLIEMA Giuseppe Sarao, Alex Muscat, Jonathan Pearson, Denni Rocha dos Santos (53′ Ryan Spiteri), Mark Scerri (76′ Gabriel Aquilina), Matias Muchardi, Stefano Bianciardi, Ricardo Calixto Correa Duarte, Jean Paul Farrugia, Salomon Wisdom, Peter Xuereb (53′ Frank Temile).
Subs not used: Miguel Bonnici, Luca Martinelli, Luca Brincat, John Mintoff.
Coach: John Buttigieg

TARXIEN Andrea Cassar, Ebiabowei Baker, Emerson Marcelina, Julian Galea, Daniel Ponce de Leon Garcia (77′ Dylan Micallef), Alex Nilsson (90+2′ Matthew Degiorgio), Andrew Agius (81′ Matthew Brincat), Alex da Paixao Alves, Matthew Tabone, Kurt Zammit, Sacha Borg.
Subs not used: Antonio Chetcuti, Daniel Caruana, Triston Caruana, Gilbert Testaferrata de Noto.
Assistant Coach: Brian Testaferrata

Referee: Stefan Pace
Assistant Referees: Chris Francalanza, Sammy Attard
Fourth Official: Fyodor Zammit
Yellow Cards: Baker, Tabone, Dani Ponce, Farrugia, Bianciardi, Wisdom, Borg, Muchardi
Red Cards: 66′ Ebiabowei Baker
BOV Player of the Match: Emerson Marcelina