The Italy Under-23 national team proved strong for the Malta women’s national team, winning 3-0 in a friendly game at the Centenary Stadium on Tuesday.
For this friendly against Italy U-23, coach Mark Gatt made only one change from the previous game against Denmark in the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup qualifications as Leah Ayres was handed a start.
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Italy took the lead on the 32nd minute thanks to Elisa Polli who slotted the ball past Patricia Ebejer, who had just replaced Jodie Attard.
One minute from the end of the first half, Italy doubled their lead through Miriam Longo.
Beatrice Merlo was unlucky to hit the crossbar with a header on the 64th but two minutes later, Melissa Bellucci scored a third goal for Italy directly from a corner.
MALTA Jodie Attard (29′ Patricia Ebejer); Ann-Marie Said (73′ Rebecca Bajada), Emma Lipman (46′ Jade Flask), Jessica Lee Dimech, Dorianne Theuma (46′ Martina Borg) (79′ Francesca Chircop), Rachel Cuschieri, Shona Zammit, Charlene Zammit, Brenda Borg (46′ Emma Xuereb), Nicole Sciberras (46′ Maia Melanie Debono), Leah Alice Ayres (29′ Ylenia Carabott).
ITALY U-23 Roberta Aprile (79′ Nicole Lauria); Federica Cafferata (69′ Bianca Vergani), Erika Santoro, Tecla Pettenuzzo, Miriam Longo (69′ Asia Bragonzi), Elisa Polli, Melissa Bellucci, Beatrice Merlo, Sofia Colombo (69′ Alice Regazzoli), Margherita Monnecchi (79′ Aurora De Rita), Michela Catena.
Referee: Jo-Anna Vassallo