BOV Premier League | Birkirkara 2 – Valletta 2

In an entertaining match at the National Stadium, Valletta and Birkirkara shared the spoils in a 2-2 draw.

Photo: Christine Borg
Photo: Christine Borg

Birkirkara made a number of high profile signings during the transfer period in their attempts to strengthen their squad. However, they came into this match sitting second from bottom with just two points.

On the other end, Valletta were coming from a good win over Balzan. The Maltese champions also failed to make the start they wished for. Despite this, they showed signs of improvement in their last matches and find themselves one point behind the three current leaders.

Valletta created the first chance of the match after 7 minutes. Bojan Kaljevic received the ball inside the penalty area and hit a low shot that was parried by Andrew Hogg.

Following the save, Oscar Carniello played the ball backwards towards Hogg and Birkirkara’s goalkeeper handled the ball. The referee was on the alert and whistled for an indirect free-kick from inside the penalty rea.

This free-kick proved fatal for Birkirkara as Valletta forged ahead. Douglas Packer played the ball in the direction of Steve Borg who drilled a low shot that filtered past Birkirkara’s players who were attempting to block the ball.

Birkirkara hit back and equalised on the 37th minute. Maurizio Vella played Henrique Prado through and the latter lobbed the ball past Henry Bonello.

Valletta regained their lead on the 57th minute. Kevin Tulimieri’s cross was met by Enmy Manuel Pena Beltre who headed the ball past Hogg.

Birkirkara drew level once again on the 69th minute. Prado was floored by Jean Borg inside the penalty area and the referee signalled for a penalty. Miguel Angel Alba stepped up and converted.

The Stripes kept on insisting and created another chance on the 80th minute. Michael Mifsud received the ball down the right flank before hitting a powerful shot that was blocked by Bonello.

Two minutes later, Federico Falcone of Birkirkara fired a powerful drive that forced another save from Valletta’s custodian.

Birkirkara remained on the offensive during the latter stages of the match but Valletta held on to take a point.

Birkirkara starting line-up: Andrew Hogg, Enrico pepe, Maurizio Vella (Edison Dos Santos Tarabai-83), Kurt Zammit, Roderick Briffa, Federico Falcone, Cain Attard, Henrique Prado, Oscar Carniello, Miguel Angel Alba (Michael Mifsud-74), Ryan Fenech

Valletta starting line-up: Henry Bonello, Steve Borg, Bojan Kaljevic, Jean Borg, Enmy Manuel Pena Beltre, Joseph Zerafa (Ryan Camilleri-73), Douglas Packer, Irakli Dzaria (Nicholas Pulis-45), Mario Fontanella, Yuri de Jesus Messias (Shaun Dimech-63), Kevin Tulimieri

Referee: Malcolm Spiteri

Assistant Referees: Jurgen Spiteri, Mitchell Scerri

Fourth Official: Matthew Degabriele

BOV Player of the Match: Henrique Prado (Birkirkara)

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