Malta ended its commitments in the UEFA Under-19 Championship with a 1-2 defeat to Portugal at the Gozo Stadium while Italy held Poland in a 1-1 draw at the National Stadium to secure the runner-up spot behind Portugal, thanks to a greater number of goals scored than Poland.
In fact, while Portugal ended their commitments with maximum points from three matches, Italy and Poland placed second on four points but while Italy scored six and conceded six, Poland scored three and conceded three.
At the Gozo Stadium, Portugal were quick to take the lead after just eight minutes thanks to a low shot by Miguel Fale from just outside the area which ended in the bottom left corner.
Portugal controlled the proceedings but on the 72nd minute, Tristan Viviani sent Basil Tuma through, goalkeeper Diogo Pinto failed to control the ball and Tuma was quick to hit low from outside the area.
However three minutes later, the Group A leaders regained the lead when off a cross by Carlos Borges from the left, Rodrigo Ribeiro left the ball for Joao Goncalves who slotted the ball home from close range.
Photo courtesy of domenic aquilina / Malta FA
PORTUGAL Diogo Pinto, Gonçalo Esteves, Gabriel Brás, Diogo Prioste (46′ Hugo Felix), Jorge Meireles (65′ Rodrigo Ribeiro), Martim Fernandes (65′ Carlos Borges), Luis Gomes, Herculano Nabian (65′ Martim Marques), Yanis Da Rocha, João Gonçalves, Miguel Falé.
MALTA Hugo Sacco, Andy Borg (68′ Bjorn Buhagiar), Mattias Ellul, Sven Xerri, Jake Micallef, Nathan Cross (69′ Sean Gatt), Lucas Scicluna, Basil Tuma, Benjamin Hili (53′ Tristan Viviani), Lucas Caruana (68′ Brooklyn Borg), Daniel Letherby (79′ Ivin Farrugia).
Referee: Joonas Jaanovits EST
Assistant referees: Aron Härsing EST, Yossi Babayoff ISR
Fourth official: Yigal Frid ISR
At the National Stadium, Italy and Poland shared the spoils in a 1-1 draw. A result which favoured Italy who will now face the winner of Group B in the semi-finals.
Poland took the lead on the 8th minute when Igor Strzalek, served by Bugaj, beat Davide Mastrantonio with a powerful shot from outside the area which was not held by the Italian goalkeeper.
However, on the 34th minute, Italy levelled matters. Samuele Vignato concluded a good run on the left flank with an assist for Luis Hasa who hit home from close range.
ITALY Davide Mastrantonio, Filippo Missori, Iacopo Regonesi, Fabio Chiarodia, Lorenzo Dellavalle, Luis Hasa, Cher N’Dour, Pio Esposito (82′ Nicolo Turco), Samuel Vignato (77′ Luca Koleosho), Michael Kayode, Giacomo Faticanti (77′ Lorenzo Amatucci).
POLAND Oliwier Zych, Igor Drapiński, Jakub Lewicki (55′ Milosz Brzozowski), Milosz Matysik, Antoni Kozubal, Dawid Bugaj (82′ Ivo Kaczmarski), Jordan Majchrzak, Wiktor Smooliński, Mateusz Kowalczyk (46′ Kacper Urbanski), Junior Nsangou (46′ Tomasz Pienko), Igor Strzałek (70′ Mateusz Kowalski).
Referee: Gergo Bogár HUN
Assistant referees: Theodoros Georgiou HUN, Dojando Myftari ALB
Fourth official: Juxhin Xhaja ALB