Balzan condemn Tarxien Rainbows to Division 1

Balzan condemned Tarxien Rainbows to playing in Division 1 next season after defeating them 3-0 at the National Stadium on Sunday.

Lying at the bottom of the table with four points after twenty matches, twelve points behind Senglea and nineteen behind Santa Lucia, with only six matches to go, the Rainbows are therefore relegated after retaining their Premier League status for over a decade.

On the other hand, Balzan move to safety waters as they move joint-seventh on 28 points. Following the departure of coach Jacques Scerri, leading the team were Ludvic Bartolo and Alejandro Pantoja.

Balzan had a perfect start, taking the lead after just one minute and fifty three seconds when off a cross by Correa from the left, Steve Pisani’s first time effort gave the Tarxien goalkeeper no chance.  

On the 13th minute, off a cross by Steve Pisani, Alfred Effiong had a first attempt partially saved by the goalkeeper and off the rebound, Stefan Dimic’s effort was turned into a corner.

Three minutes in the second half, Alfred Effiong had a powerful drive from outside the area ending just wide.

However, on the 58th minute, Balzan doubled the score as Alfred Effiong sent Adeseyi Adekoya through on the left and the latter slotted past goalkeeper Rudy Briffa.

On the 61st, off a cross by Bozovic from the right, Effiong beat Briffa but Matthew Tabone cleared into safety off the goal line. Seven minutes later, off a cross by Alfred Effiong, Ricardo Correa headed the ball down for Seyi Adekoya whose attempt hit the crossbar. On the 73rd minute, Destin Mambouna headed just wide off a Thomas Veronese freekick from the right. 

Three minutes later, Balzan scored a third goal thanks to Ricardo Correa who received an assist from the left by Paul Fenech before hitting low with the goalkeeper unable to save the ball, making a second desperate attempt when it had already crossed the goal line.

BALZAN Kristian Naumovski, Augustine Loof, Dale Camilleri, Adeseyi Adekoya, Steve Pisani, Steve Bezzina, Paul Fenech (78’ Marcus Grima), Alfred Effiong (72’ Luke Montebello), Ivan Bozovic, Stefan Dimic (56’ Samir Arab), Ricardo Correa Duarte.
Subs not used: Sean Mintoff, Adam Bradshaw, Kyle Sciberras Balbi, Pedro Augusto Mota.
Coach: Ludvic Bartolo

TARXIEN Rudy Briffa, Marco Botta (79’ Dale Tabone), Thomas Veronese, Destin Mambouana, Gary Camilleri, Aleksa Andrejic (12’ Luca Brincat), Stiv Shaba, Dhonatan Santos da Hora (68’ Brandon Muscat), Matthew Tabone, Miguel Ciantar, Misael Miranda Gomez.
Subs not used: Maverick Buhagiar, Daniel Vassallo, Nevin Portelli, Dale Tabone, Daniel Zerafa.
Coach: Demis Paul Scerri

Referee: Daniel Portelli
Assistant Referees: Edward Spiteri, Ivan Galea
Fourth Official: Ishmael Barbara
Yellow Cards: Fenech, Muscat
BOV Player of the Match: Ricardo Calixto Correa Duarte