BOV Premier League | Gzira United 2 – Floriana 2

Floriana are now on level points with Valletta as they were held by Gzira in a 2-2 draw.

Photo: Dominic Borg
Photo: Dominic Borg

This was a match between two teams who were looking to turn things around.

Gzira lost in their previous two matches against Santa Lucia and Sliema. The Maroons were conscious that a win in this match was imperative if they are to win the Premier League.

Meanwhile, Floriana were unbeaten in the first round. However, they lost to Birkirkara in the first match of the second round. The Greens were also defeated by Valletta in their previous fixture.

Vincenzo Potenza’s side were also aware that Valletta won and climbed ahead of them and thus needed a win in order to remain at the top of the table.

Gzira created the first chance of the match on the 21st minute. Wilfried Domoraud made space for himself inside the penalty area and fired a shot that went centimetres off target.

Floriana broke the deadlock on the 32nd minute. Gzira’s defenders failed to clear their marks following a corner. The ball fell for Stefano D’Agostino whose shot took a deflection off a defender and ended up inside the net.

Gzira replied a minute later. Following a long throw, Hamed Kone headed the ball towards Marco Criaco whose effort was tipped behind by Ini Etim Akpan.

On the 36th minute, Kone of Gzira sent a diagonal shot from inside the penalty area that sailed wide.

Floriana could have scored again on the 39th minute. Following a fast counter attack, Kristian Keqi delivered a cross towards Marcelo Dias who failed to hit the target from close range.

Gzira kept on insisting and threatened Floriana once again two minutes from half time. Zachary Scerri sent a powerful volley from distance that went high.

The Maroons made a great start to the second half and forged ahead on the 49th minute. Domoraud sent a long ball towards Marco Criaco who exhibited great skills before placing the ball past Akpan.

Gzira remained on the offensive and created another chance ten minutes later. Martin Davis played the ball in the direction of Zachary Scerri whose shot was saved by Akpan in two attempts.

Criaco sent Gzira ahead on the 65th minute. Dexter Xuereb drilled a cross towards the unmarked Italian whose first timer gave Akpan no chance.

Floriana equalised on the 87th minute. Diego Venancio’s delivery from a free-kick sailed into the path of Tiago Adan Fonseca who headed the ball home.

Following this goal, both sides had to settle for a point as both Gzira and Floriana were conscious not to lose the match.

Gzira United starting line-up: Justin Haber, Fernando Barbosa, Nikolai Muscat (Juan Corbalan-82), Zachary Scerri, Rodolfo Soares, Dexter Xuereb, Hamed Kone (Amadou Samb-75), Sacha Borg, Marco Criaco, Wilfried Domoraud, Martin Davis (Andrew Cohen-80)

Floriana starting line-up: Ini Etim Akpan, Enzo Ruiz, Diego Venancio, Kristian Keqi, Jose Arias Ulises (Jan Busuttil-61), Stefano D’Agostino (Clyde Borg-90+5), Jurgen Pisani, Alexander Cini (Terence Vella-85), Marcelo Dias, Ryan Camenzuli, Tiago Adan Fonseca

Referee: Fyodor Zammit

Assistant Referees: Edward Spiteri, Mitchell Scerri

Fourth Official: Malcolm Spiteri

BOV Player of the Match: Marco Criaco (Gzira)