Santa Lucia moved sixth as they registered a third win on the trot, defeating neighbours Gudja United 3-2 at the Centenary Stadium on Sunday.
Oliver Spiteri’s side moves one point ahead of Gudja, seven behind leaders Sliema. For Gudja, this was the third defeat in five matches.
Santa Lucia took the lead on the 7th minute thanks to Alan da Silva Souza who pounced on a loose ball after Dale Camilleri intercepted a cross by Kieran Xuereb for Victor Luiz and beat Glenn Zammit with a powerful shot from outside the area.
On the 26th minute, Santa Lucia doubled the score when Alan da Silva Souza chipped the ball over goalkeeper Glenn Zammit from the left and the Gudja custodian deflected a cross by Marukawa from the right.
Two minutes from the end of the first half, Gudja reduced the gap thanks to a first time effort by Tensior Gusman following a corner from the right.
Santa Lucia went 3-1 ahead on the 67th minute with a goal by Kevin Ante Rosero who received an assist inside the area and beat Zammit with a fine rising shot from the right.
Gudja narrowed the gap on the 84th thanks to Yuri Messias who received the ball on the edge of the area and controlled before beating Farrugia with an angled shot from the right.
Two minutes from time, Aidan Jake Friggieri was sent off for Gudja after receiving a second yellow card for a reckless tackle.
SANTA LUCIA Christopher Farrugia, Timothy Tabone Desira, Andre Fausto Prates, Kevin Correia, Adam Magri Overend (70′ Michael Camilleri), Alan da Silva Souza, Kevin Ante Rosero, Victor Luiz Filho, Jamie Zerafa, Rei Tachikawa, Kieran Xuereb.
Coach: Oliver Spiteri
GUDJA Glenn Zammit, Jurgen Farrugia (46′ James Brincat), Yuri Messias, Aidan Friggieri, Tensior Gusman, Llywelyn Cremona (74′ Terence Vella), Imanol Gonzalez Benac, Neil Micallef, Juan Andres Bolanos, Dale Camilleri, Patrick Silva Mota.
Coach: Jesmond Zammit
Referee: Emanuel Grech
Assistant Referees: Luke Portelli, Darko Stankovic
Fourth Official: Andrea Sciriha
Yellow Cards: J. Bolanos, L. Cremona, J. Zerafa, M. Camilleri, N. Micallef, A. Friggieri, P. Silva Mota
Red Card: 88’ Aiden Friggieri
BOV Player of the Match: Alan da Silva Souza