Balzan move to safer waters

Australian forward George Blackwood notched a hat-trick as Balzan collected three precious points in the battle against relegation, defeating Sirens 4-1 at the Centenary Stadium on Saturday.

Balzan move one point ahead of Gzira and Naxxar, four ahead of Santa Lucia, six ahead of Maota and nine ahead of Valletta.

Sirens, on the other hand, have already had their fate sealed and will be playing in the Challenge League next season.

Balzan took the lead on the 36th minute when off an assist by Aleksa Andrejic from the left, Ryohei Michibuchi had a shot blocked by a defender but George Blackwood controlled before slotting the ball past goalkeeper Andrea Cassar.

George Blackwood doubled the score on the 65th when off a corner by Michibuchi, the ball was deflected by Nikola Braunovic with the Australian forward hitting home from close range.

Seven minutes from time, Nicholas Pulis was unlucky to commit an own goal as he deflected a cross from the right by Dimeji Awosanya past goalkeeper Cassar.

Four minutes later, Balzan were awarded a penalty after a defender handled the ball inside the area and George Blackwood converted.

Three minutes in added time, Sirens scored a consolation goal thanks to Prosper Boakye Owusu who intercepted the ball on the edge of the area and hit hard past goalkeeper Rudy Briffa.

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