Hibernians came from behind to beat Birkirkara 3-2 at the National Stadium on Friday. A win which puts the Paolites, at least temporarily, two points ahead of Valletta.
Birkirkara left Ta’ Qali disappointed as they saw three precious points fade away in the final seven minutes. Three points which would have put them in fourth place. The Stripes are now sixth on 39 points, two behind Sliema Wanderers and one behind Hamrun who have a game in hand
Birkirkara managed to take the lead on the 3rd minute thanks to Luke Montebello when served by Maurizio Vella from the left.
On the 8th minute, Taylon Correa’s angled shot from the left was turned into a corner by Hogg and two minutes later, his powerful shot from outside the area hit the crossbar.
Hibernians, however, levelled matters on 43 minutes thanks to Tiago Adan Fonseca who slotted the ball past Hogg when served by Jake Grech.
Two minutes in the second half, Birkirkara regained the lead when Maurizio Vella had a close-range shot blocked by Jovicic and off the rebound the ball reached Jorginho who was brought down by Radojevic; referee Alan Mario Sant ordered a penalty and Clayton Failla converted from the penalty spot.
Hibs went close to equalising seven minutes from time but Taylon Correa’s overhead kick was turned into a corner by the former Hibernians goalkeeper.
However one minute later, the Paolites were not to be denied when off a cross from the right, Taylon Nicolas Correa Marcolino rose high to anticipate Hogg and head home.
But it was not over yet as one minute from time, Hibernians notched the winner thanks to an Andrei Agius header following a corner by Marco Sahanek from the left.
B’KARA Andrew Hogg, Danilo Chapoval, Mislav Andjelkovic, Maurizio Vella, Maurizio Vella, Luke Montebello, Johann Bezzina, Clayton Failla (65′ Kurt Zammit), Eduardo Ferreira dos Santos, Nikola Vukanac, Cain Attard (79′ Thiago de Souza de Brito), Jorge Pereira da Silva (65′ Michael Mifsud).
Subs not used: Amara Sylla, Matthew Guillaumier, Paul Mbong, Ayrton Attard.
Coach: Mark Buttigieg
HIBS Marko Jovicic, Dunstan Vella, Nemanja Radojevic, Marcio Barbosa da Silveira (51′ Marco Sahanek), Joseph Mbong, Jake Grech, Bjorn Kristensen, Isaac Ntow, Taylon Nicolas Correa Marcolino (90′ Timothy Tabone Desira), Andrei Agius, Tiago Adan Fonseca.
Subs not used: Rudy Briffa, Connor Zammit, Daneel Abela, Andreas Vella, David Xuereb.
Asst. Coach: Ryan Pulis
Referee: Alan Mario Sant
Assistant Referees: Edward Spiteri, Mitchell Scerri
Fourth Official: Stefan Pace
Yellow Cards: Mbong, Andjelkovic, Jorginho, Attard
BOV Player of the Match: Maurizio Vella