Malta Under-16 girls end tournament on a positive note

The Malta Under-16 girls team concluded their UEFA Youth Girls Development Tournament commitments on a very positive note after beating Azerbaijan 2-0 on Wednesday.

Captain Alexandra Gatt scored the opening goal in the first half when she converted from the penalty spot. Gaia Antonelli’s low drive in the second half sealed Malta’s second win of the tournament following their victory over Gibraltar on Sunday.

For this game, coach Dionne Tonna handed goalkeeper Justyne Caruana her first start after Maya Cachia and Raisa Costantino guarded Malta’s goal in the previous two matches. Midfielder Georgiana Mifsud was also named in the starting formation.

In the first 45 minutes, the Maltese girls produced a solid performance, capitalising on their possession through Alexandra Gatt in the 24th minute. Sarah Vella Barbieri darted towards goal before being tripped by the Azerbaijan goalkeeper with the referee ordering a penalty. Gatt made no mistake.

Azerbaijan’s reply came from Edanur Mutlu but her effort went wide.

After the break, Malta were by far the better team, missing a flurry of chances through Hannah Khatib and Vella Barbieri. First, Khatib tried her luck from the edge of the box before Barbieri’s effort was blocked by the Azerbaijan custodian.

Malta made sure of the win when Antonelli let fly a low drive from the edge of the penalty box into the far corner.

In Wednesday’s opening match, Scotland defeated Gibraltar 11-0 to make it three wins out of three.

AZERBAIJAN Madina Gozelova, Samira Ashurova, Fidan Jafarova, Fatima Ahmadli, Aytac Mirzayeva, Chinara Mursalova, Intizar Hagverdiyeva, Catherine Moore, Shakara Piriyeva, Bushra Yabanci, Edanur Mutlu.
Subs used: Aydan Hasanova, Nahida Mammadova, Rubabe Atakishizada, Zaha Huseynli Fatimeyi, Zuleyka Zamanli.

MALTA Justyne Caruana, Martina Fenech, Alexandra Gatt, Rhea Borg, Eunice Micallef, Georgiana Mifsud, Gaia Antonelli, Michaela Cachia, Hannah Khatib, Ileana Farrugia, Sarah Vella Barbieri.
Subs used: Sabrin Bilhi, Iulia Mifsud, Federica Zahra.

Referee: Gerard Zammit Young