Malta Football Association
Perfect start for Mġarr and Melita, KO success for Mdina
Nov 11, 2020
Posted in:
BOV Amateur League A
BOV Amateur League B
BOV Amateur League C
(c) Stephen Gatt
(c) Stephen Gatt

  • (c) Stephen Gatt
  • (c) Stephen Gatt
  • (c) Walter Sargent

Only two games in the BOV Challenge League last weekend, with Marsa and Marsaxlokk both winning their postponed matches. In the BOV Amateur Leagues, Mġarr and Melita continued their perfect record while Mtarfa also opened their account with a win. Mdina Knights reached the last 16 of the Amateur Cup in the only midweek fixture.

BOV Challenge League

Marsa  4 Naxxar Lions 1
Last Sunday, Marsa turned defeat into victory against Naxxar with a magnificent second half display. Erikys da Silva put Naxxar up on 41 minutes. After the break Marsa coach Ivan Zammit made two substitutions that proved to be the turning point of the match, with Paolo Henrique and Lydon Micallef turning the game, drawing level with a Patrick Jean header on 68 minutes. Eleven minutes from time Marsa took the lead with another header this time from Paolo Henrique. In the remaining minutes Marsa sealed the issue with a Lyden Micallef brace, which sent Naxxar tumbling. Erikys da Silva marred his positive display with a second caution two minutes before full-time.

Marsaxlokk 1 Mqabba 0
Marsaxlokk registered their second consecutive victory in the space of three days beating Mqabba 1-0 in a very tight match. The game was rather disappointing particularly in the first period with practically no shots at goal. The game was more entertaining on the resumption with Peter Xuereb scoring the winner just after an hour play with a great header that caught the Mqabba custodian by surprise. Mqabba had a timid reaction and Marsaxlokk should have rounded off the game in the dying minutes but substitute Ivan Paz missed from the 12-yard spot, his shot hitting the upper part of the crossbar.

BOV Amateur League

Group A
Birżebbuġa St Peter’s 1 Mellieħa 4
Mellieħa came from behind to register their first win of the season. Birżebbuġa started well and established their advantage on 12 minutes through Shawn Vella. The turning point of the match came nine minutes later when Brendan Scerri was shown the red card for the Southseasiders. From there on, Mellieħa took command of the match. Michael Micallef showed his best as he notched a hat-trick with goals on 40, 59 and 70 minutes. Brazilian centre-forward Cleiton added another one for Mellieħa two minutes before the break. A moral lifting win for the men of coach Brian Bartolo, who finally showed their true potential.

Ta’ Xbiex 0 Żurrieq 2
In the second match played at the Victor Tedesco Stadium on Saturday, Żurrieq unexpectedly had to battle hard to see off Ta’ Xbiex. The team of coach Renald Bugeja started well, keeping their more quoted opponents at bay in the first half. However, on 42 minutes, Antonello Demanuele received his second yellow card after a reckless tackle, seriously hampering the possibilities of Ta’ Xbiex to get something out of this match. Żurrieq showed their aggressive play in the second half and finally broke the deadlock on 58 minutes thanks to towering centre-back Adrian Caruana. Italian attacker Erik Pietribiasi then doubled eight minutes from fulltime to secure the three points for Żurrieq.

Marsaskala 0 Mġarr United 4
Mġarr also won their third league match of the season. They took an early 3rd minute late thanks to a wonderful top corner goal by Aaron Sammut. Marsaskala had a Joseph Chetcuti header on 40 minutes just missing target. Close to the hour, Marsaskala should have equalised but Nicky Parnis’ attempt into the empty net somehow went over the crossbar. On 67 minutes, Mġarr’s Lazar Doric headed on the crossbar and seven minutes after that, Marsaskala’s Justin Cilia was booked for a second time and was sent-off. Saliba added Mġarr’s second goal in the 79th minute with a direct free-kick, followed by a Doric goal on 82 minutes and a Jamie-Lee Micallef strike on full-time.

Għaxaq 2 Għargħur 2
Goalkeeper Duane Carabott dramatically saved a point for his new team Għaxaq deep into added time with a stunning header. Għargħur took the lead in the 13th minute thanks to David Mifsud. After the break, Għaxaq showed better intentions and managed to draw close to the hour thanks to a goal by Phiram Sakchai. Għaxaq created more goalscoring opportunities through Rio Micallef, Radovan Duric and Sakchai but somehow did not manage to find the net. With five minutes left on the clock, Carabott committed a foul in the box on Għargħur striker Ikechukwu Igwemeke, with the referee pointing at the spot. Igwemeke took the spotkick himself and cooly converted, until Carabott made up for his mistake, heading the equaliser past Warren Galea after an accurate Duric corner.

Group B
Mdina Knights 1 Mtarfa 2
New-look Mtarfa opened their account by beating neighbours Mdina Knights by the odd goal in three. In the 14th minute, Luca Casha’s free-kick missed target for Mtarfa and not much later on the other side, Andreas Anastasi hit the post. Despite having very little goal threat, Mtarfa took the lead on 32 minutes thanks to Ryan Sciberras. Mdina showed the better ideas but were denied with some good saves by Mtarfa goalkeeper Slaven Micallef. Six minutes after the break, Daniel Law hit the crossbar for the Knights but on 63 minutes, Anastasi scored the equaliser after a corner from Law. On 77 minutes however, substitute Alejandro Brincat hit the winner for Mtarfa.

Rabat Ajax 3 Luqa St Andrew’s 1
The Magpies are still unbeaten this season, beating Luqa St. Andrews 3-1 at the Luxol Stadium on Saturday. The team led by coach Vesko Petrovic showed great form and could be one of the promotion contenders in this group this season. Aidan Azzopardi opened the score with an early ninth minute strike and doubled the score thanks to a 26th minute penalty by Wayne Borg. Luqa became gradually more into the match but had to wait until the 70th minute with substitute Ryan Gafa reducing the deficit. However, seven minutes later, Azzopardi restored Rabat’s two goal cushion to give his team a vital three points from this tricky encounter. 

Msida St Joseph 0 Żabbar St Patrick 3
To the surprise of many, Żabbar emphatically beat Msida 3-0, with all the goals coming in the second half.  In the 56th minute, Żabbar opened the score as young Christian Desira managed to outrun the red's defence, placing the ball behind Msida goalkeeper Gosef Mizzi. Substitute Jake Hartley doubled the score on 76 minutes with a powerful shot from just outside the box ending in the far corner, giving Mizzi no chance. Jean Claud Cesare added a third for the team of coach Dennis Apap, who is now sharing top position with Rabat in Group B.

Group C
Dingli Swallows 0 Santa Venera Lightnings 0
Dingli and Santa Venera played out a goalless draw in a drab affair. Dingli were the better side in the first half and early in the match, Dario Borg missed target from a good angle. The Swallows continued to show the better ideas and Borg came close again to open the score in the 20th minute after solo effort but the ball went just over the bar. In the 37th minute, Andrew Scerri passed to Luke Galea who’s shot hit the crossbar. Santa Venera had two good chances in the second half. Substitute Matthew Scicluna’s shot hit wide on 73 minutes and a freekick by Shawn Cutajar four minutes later sailed over the bar. 

Melita 4 Xgħajra Tornados 1
Melita also won their third league match of the season. The Amateurs dictated play against Xgħajra, who also had its fair share of ball possession with Reuter Degiorgio keeping the Melita defence busy. Nigel Rizzo opened the score for Melita in the 24th minute with a low shot from the edge of the box and Nicholas Jaccarini doubled with a fine header on 40 minutes. Just after the break, Matteo Desira Buttigieg was the fastest to punish a mistake by Xgħajra goalkeeper Luke Attard, to add Melita’s 3rd goal. Xgħajra pulled one back thanks to an unlucky own goal by debutant Samuel Barthet on 74 minutes. In the attack what followed, Rizzo restored the three-goal lead with a fine strike.

Kirkop United 2 Kalkara United 2
In this entertaining clash, the early initiative was held by Kalkara and in the 29th minute, winger Liam Ciantar was brought down in the box with veteran Alan Tabone converting from the penalty spot to give Kalkara a 1-0 advantage at the break. In the 53rd minute, Kirkop equalised thanks to Dylan Tanti and ten minutes later, Kirkop’s centre-back Davide Mula put his team 2-1 up after rounding off another solid Kirkop attack. Two minutes later however, striker Aidan Gilford-Agius beat Kirkop goalkeeper Matthew Xerxen after a cross by Ciantar to equalise for Kalkara.

Amateur Cup PR
Mtarfa 0 Mdina Knights 0 aet
(Mdina winners after penalty kicks: 4-5)
Both teams met again in a space of five days and this time Mdina were the luckiest, beating their neighbours after penalties at the Victor Tedesco Stadium yesterday. The match was definitely less exciting then the league match they shared on Saturday, but tension was built up until the end, with the penalty series being decisive. Mtarfa’s first penalty, taken by Karl Conti, was saved by Mdina goalkeeper Albert Galea and with all kicks being converted, young 16-year-old Jake Vella missed Mdina’s last penalty. Christian Bordieri’s spotkick was then saved by Mtarfa goalkeeper James Borg, but Mtarfa missed their last two kicks before Mdina’s Kurt Grixti’s penalty gave Mdina the win. The Knights will play against Żurrieq in the Round of 16.

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