Birkirkara leave it late to defeat Naxxar

A late goal in stoppage-time handed Birkirkara a 1-0 victory over Naxxar Lions.

Birkirkara dominated the majority of the match buy they could not get through the stubborn defence of Naxxar. As the match was looking to end in a draw, the late goal by Birkirkara left no chance for Naxxar.

Naxxar had the first chance on goal just two minutes into the match when Pape Gueye’s shot went just wide.

On the other side of the pitch, Birkirkara went close to scoring when off a freekick by Rafael Ledesma Zach Muscat’s header scraped past the post in the 19th minute.

Birkirkara again came close to scoring in the 33rd minute. Ellinton Antonio Costa Morais was unlucky to have his shot hit the woodwork.

Birkirkara continued to press for and were denied by some great goalkeeping by Julian Azzopardi.

Azzopardi performed a great save on a shot by Paul Fenech in the 62nd minute, a few minutes later goalkeeper Julian Azzopardi performed another great save on a shot by Ryan Scicluna.

Birkirkara were unlucky not to score again in the 67th minute when off a corner by Rafael Ledesma, Alejandro Mendoza’s header hit the crossbar.

Goalkeeper Julian Azzopardi performed a great save on a over-head kick by Eliandro following a cross by Zack Muscat on the 85th minute.

Birkirkara finally scored the goal that would give them all three points in added time. Goalkeeper Julian Farrugia deflected a cross by Edward Herrera and off the rebound, Paul Fenech’s shot from outside the area beat Azzopardi to give Birkirkara the victory and keep their perfect start to the season intact.

NAXXAR LIONS:  Julian Azzopardi, Andrew Scicluna, Emmanuel Ibok Edet, Victor Bellia (80′ Gilmar da Silva Ribeiro), Terence Vella, Pape Gueye, Daren Falzon, David Fenech (39′ Mattia Del Negro), Angus Buhagiar (46′ Ryan Gilmour Cassar), David Alejandro Reano, Uchenna Emenike Mbachu.

Subs not used: Luke Pecorella, Duane Bonnici, Yaron Sammut, Jurgen Debono.

Coach: Winston Muscat

BIRKIRKARA: Justin Haber, Alejandro Mendoza Corujo, Ellinton Antonio Costa Morais, Nikola Vukanac, Rafael Pompeo Ledesma Rodrigues (67′ Eliandro dos Santos Gonzaga), Edward Herrera, Paul Fenech, Zach Muscat, Ryan Scicluna (84′ Kurt Zammit), Leighton Grech (68′ Matheus Bissi da Silva), Ryan Camenzuli.

Subs not used: Justin Tonna, Antoine Borg, Andrea Curmi, Russell Gatt de Raffaele.

Coach: Paul Zammit

Referee: Philip Farrugia

Assistant Referees: Edward Spiteri, Luke Portelli

Additional Assistant Referees: Adrian Azzopardi, Malcolm Spiteri

Fourth Official: Sammy Attard

Yellow Cards: R. Scicluna, E. Mbachu, A. Buhagiar, T. Vella

Scorer: 90+3′ Paul Fenech

BOV Player of the Match: Julian Azzopardi

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