In-form Birkirkara registered a third consecutive win as they defeated Hibernians 2-1 at the National Stadium on Saturday.
This was the seventh positive result for the Stripes which enables them to move to just two points behind fifth-placed Gzira and four behind the Paolites. Hibernians, on the other hand, fail to keep the pace with the two joint-leaders as they remain four points behind both Floriana and Valletta.
Birkirkara took the lead on the 34th minute when off a cross from the left, Caio Henrique Prado controlled the ball and hit low with the ball being deflected by Ferdinando Apap past goalkeeper Marko Jovicic.
However one minute in added time, Hibernians were awarded a penalty after Enrico Pepe fouled Andrei Agius inside the area and from the penalty spot, Jake Grech made no mistake.
The Stripes were unlucky not to regain the lead on the 62nd when Yannick Yankam hit the upright with a header off a Matthew Guillaumier corner from the right.
Birkirkara, however, were not to be denied as they made it 2-1 on 79 minutes thanks to Yannick Yankam who hit low past Jovicic following an assist from the right by Caio Henrique Prado.
B’KARA Andrew Hogg, Enrico Pepe, Matthew Guillaumier, Paul Mbong (85′ Roderick Briffa), Yannick Yankam, Federico Falcone, Cain Attard, Claudio Bonanni, Caio Henrique Prado Rocha (90′ Michael Mifsud), Oscar Matias Carniello, Isaac Toah Ntow.
Subs not used: Amara Syllam Jeferson de Sousa Ferreira, Johann Bezzina, Zachary Cassar, Ryan Fenech.
Coach: Andre Paus
Asst. Coach: Jonathan Holland
HIBS Marko Jovicic, Timothy Tabone Desira (46′ Bjorn Kristensen), Ferdinando Apap (85′ Myles Beerman), Jens Alex Wemmer, Joseph Essien Mbong, Jake Grech, Dunstan Vella, Gabriel Izquier Artiles, Edison Luis dos Santos (63′ Jorge Santos Silva), Andrei Agius, Imanol Iriberri.
Subs not used: Matthew Calleja Cremona, Matthew Ellul, Edafe Christopher Uzeh, Ayrton Attard.
Coach: Stefano Sanderra
Asst. Coach: Ryan Pulis
Referee: Ishmael Barbara
Assistant Referees: Edward Spiteri, Luke Portelli
Fourth Official: Malcolm Spiteri
Yellow Cards: Bonanni, Apap, Pepe, J. Mbong, Falcone
BOV Player of the Match: Caio Henrique Prado