Birkirkara registered a fourth consecutive win as they defeated Gzira United 2-0 at the National Stadium on Sunday to move fifth, one point ahead of the Maroons.
This was the eighth positive result on the trot for the team led by Andre Paus who now join the challenge for a place in European football this summer. Gzira, on the other hand, suffered a fourth defeat in six matches.
On the 2nd minute, Yannick Yankam went close for Birkirkara with an angled shot from the right which was parried by Haber and on the 23rd, a Roderick Briffa effort was saved in two attempts by Haber.
Birkirkara took the lead two minutes later thanks to a great goal by Caio Henrique Prado whose fine rising shot from outside the area stunned the Gzira goalkeeper.
Gzira replied with a Hamed Kone freekick which was turned into a corner by Hogg on the 31st and three minutes from the end of the first half, Haber turned into a corner a freekick by Claudio Bonnani.
Hamed Kone concluded a good run by rounding a defender and testing the Hogg with a shot from outside the area on the 69th.
However, four minutes from time, Birkirkara sealed the issue with a second goal when substitute Diego Capel received a throw in by Cain Attard and advanced on the right before hitting low past Haber.
GZIRA Justin Haber, Gianmarco Conti, Nikolai Muscat (64’ Amadou Samb), Zach Scerri, Rodolfo Soares (66’ Clifford Gatt Baldacchino), Juan Carlos Corbalan, Dexter Xuereb, Hamed Kone, Marco Criaco (15’ Karl Pulo), Wilfried Domoraud, Martin Davis.
BIRKIRKARA Andrew Hogg, Paul Mbong (74’ Ryan Fenech), Kurt Zammit, Yannick Yankam, Roderick Briffa, Federico Falcone (88’ Michael Mifsud), Cain Attard, Claudio Bonanni, Caio Henrique Prado (84’ Diego Capel), Oscar Matias Carniello, Isaac Ntow.
Referee: Trustin Farrugia Cann
Assistant Referees: Duncan Sultana, Roberto Vella
Fourth Official: Alan Mario Sant
Yellow Cards: Domoraud
BOV Player of the Match: Caio Henrique Prado