BOV Premier League | Hibernians 3 – Balzan 1

Balzan’s chances of securing their first ever Premier League trophy took a huge set back as they suffered a 3-1 defeat at the hands of Hibernians.

Clayton Failla of Hibernians challenging Alfred Effiong. Photo: Dominic Borg
Clayton Failla of Hibernians challenging Alfred Effiong. Photo: Dominic Borg

Balzan created the first chance of the match after five minutes. Alan Da Silva Souza served Bojan Kaljevic and the latter hit a powerful drive from distance that went wide.

Hibs replied by going ahead on the 35th minute. Jackson Lima sent a cross inside the penalty area towards Clayton Failla who finished past Ivan Janjusevic from close range.

Oliver Spiteri’s side tried to hit back on the 41st minute. Ryan Fenech sent a long ball towards Matteo Piciollo whose effort went high.

Balzan’s efforts paid off three minutes later. From a corner, Fenech delivered a dangerous cross towards the unmarked Alfred Effiong who headed past Andrew Hogg to make it 1-1.

On the 54th minute, Effiong passed the ball towards Kaljevic inside the penalty area and the Balzan striker fired a low shot that was neutralised by Hogg.

Two minutes later, the Paolites regained the lead. Substitute Johann Bezzina received the ball from Jurgen Degabriele and hit a strong shot that gave Janjusevic no chance.

The goal filled the Hibernians players with confidence and created another chance on the 63rd minute. Gilmar Da Silva Ribeiro went on a good run and fired a shot from the edge of the penalty area that was well saved by Janjusevic.

Balzan tried to equalise for the second time in the match on the 71st minute. Effiong received the ball inside the penalty area and served Kaljevic whose finish went off target.

Mark Miller’s side sealed the issue on the 75th minute. Jorge Da Silva Pereira won the ball inside Balzan’s half and sent a shot from distance that hit the ground and ended up in the bottom corner.

Balzan tried to score a consolation goal and had a promising chance on the 87th minute. Lydon Micallef fired a shot from the edge of the penalty area that went slightly wide.

After the full time whistle, Janjusevic was shown a straight red card by the referee.

Balzan starting line-up: Ivan Janjusevic, Dylan Grima, Bruno Giglio De Oliveira, Bojan Kaljevic, Ryan Fenech, Steve Bezzina, Alan Da Silva Souza, Alfred Effiong, Elkin Serrano Valero, Paul Fenech, Matteo Piciollo

Hibernians starting line-up: Andrew Hogg, Rodolfo Soares, Dejan Boljevic, Marcelo Dias, Jackson Lima Siqueira, Clayton Failla, Bjorn Kristensen, Jorge Da Silva Pereira, Jurgen Degabriele, Gilmar Da Silva Ribeiro, Andrei Agius

Referee: Alan Mario Sant

Assistant Referees: Jurgen Spiteri, Paul Apap

Additional Assistant Referees: Philip Farrugia, Mario Apap

Fourth Official: William Debattista

BOV Player of the Match: Marcelo Dias (Hibernians)