GFA Melita Division II
Qala Saints   Zebbug Rovers
Qala Saints : 1   3 : Zebbug Rovers

(M. Buttigieg 27’ pen.)

 

(M. Formosa 9’, 55’; S. Muscat 90+4’)

F. Buttigieg, M. Cefai, J. Rapa, M. Buttigieg, N. Portelli, D. Cutajar, A. Cini, J. Attard (M. Scerri), D. Portelli (S. Spiteri), S. Muscat, J. Galea.

 

B. Saliba, A. Tramboo, A. Zammit, M. Formosa, P. Cardona, M. Cordina, J.P. Saliba, G. Portelli (P. Frendo) (O. Calleja), O. Saliba (F. Cassar), W. Cassar, S. Muscat.

Both Zebbug Rovers and Qala Saints were aiming to win the full points at stake from this delicate match of the second round of the campaign as the former needed to move away from the bottom of the table while the latter needed points to join the challenge for the runners-up position on the table.  At the end the Rovers prevailed over their opponents for the third time this season, two wins from the league matches and a win in the KO competition, and with the points obtained they are now joining the same Qala on the table.

Zebbug opened the score in the ninth minute of play when Qala’s rearguard cleared a free kick from long distance by Alex Tramboo and the ball arrived to Matthion Formosa outside the area so that the latter concluded in goal with a fine shot towards the far post.  Qala could have leveled the score on 16 minutes but Shaun Muscat incredibly concluded wide when he was alone in the area following a counter break.  The Maroons however scored the equalizer on 27 minutes when the referee awarded a penalty for a foul by goalie Baskal Saliba on Shaun Muscat and Manuel Buttigieg converted from the spot kick.  Play became more balanced as time passed by.  Zebbug had a free kick by Manwel Cordina one minute later that ended high and in the following action an effort by Qala’s Malcolm Cefai missed the target.  On 36 minutes Zebbug’s Anthony Zammit entered the area with a personal action but his shot was well saved by goalie Franco Buttigieg and the same goalkeeper was well placed on 41 minutes to neutralize an attempt by Manwel Cordina.

The Rovers were again dangerous in the opening minutes of the second period and on 49 minutes two consecutive attempts by Anthony Zammit and Manwel Cordina from a good position and with the goalkeeper out of his position were blocked by the defense.  Zebbug however regained the lead on 55 minutes when Matthion Formosa was again at the right place to take a clearance from the defense following a corner action and fired in goal with a strike from outside the area that surprised the goalkeeper.  The Maroons tried hard to recover the deficit and on 69 minutes John Rapa headed wide from close distance following a cross by Daniel Portelli while a lob by Alan Cini following some hesitation at Zebbug’s defense ended high.  On 90 minutes the same Cini had a shot following a pass by Josef Galea that was blocked by Zebbug’s goalie.  Alan Cini was sent off in the second minute of stoppage time for retaliation and in two minutes later Zebbug sealed the victory when Matthion Formosa released Samuel Muscat in Qala’s territory following a counter break and the former netted with a fine lob as the goalkeeper left his position in an attempt to block the danger.

Referee: Lorry Sammut

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