Birkirkara hold NK Maribor in a draw

Birkirkara held NK Maribor in a 1-1 draw in the first leg of the UEFA Europa Conference League first qualifying round at the the Stadion Ljudski vrt on Thursday.

A positive result which leaves open chances of reaching the next stage of the competition where the winner would be meeting FC Differdange 03. The second leg against Maribor is scheduled at the Centenary Stadium on Thursday, kick-off at 17:00.

Tedesco named new recruits Marcel Zapytowski, Johan Pajovic and Enmy Pena Beltre in the starting line-up while Babacar Tounkara, Italo Montano and Weverton Gomes were included as substitutes.

Birkirkara took the lead on the 31st minute when Paul Mbong concluded a good move with a powerful shot from a distance of around twenty five metres ending in the top left corner, giving the Slovenian goalkeeper no chance. 

However the hosts equalised on the 67th minute when they were awarded a penalty after Kolar was adjudged by referee Mohammed Al-emara to have been brought down on the edge of the area and Ivan Brnic converted from the penalty spot. 

MARIBOR Azbe Jug, Hilal Soudani (44’ Marko Kolar), Ivan Brnic, Itsuki Urata, Jan Repas (90′ Xhuliano Skuka), Aljaz Antolin (46′ Marcel Lorber), Arnes Jakupovic (71′ Marko Bozovic), Max Watson, Martin Milec, Luka Uskokovic, Marin Lausic.

BIRKIRKARA Marcel Zapytowski, Jovan Pajovic, Enrico Pepe, Yannick Yankam, Paul Mbong (90′ Weverton Gomes), Enmy Pena Beltre, Neil Micallef (69’ Babacar Tounkara), Alessandro Coppola, Simon Zibo, Denis Custodio Ribeiro (41’ Kurt Zammit), Andrei Ciolacu (69’ Italo Montano). 

Referee: Mohammed Al-emara FIN
Assistant referees: Jan-Peter Aravirta, Turkka Joonas Valjakka FIN
Fourth official: Peiman Simani FIN