A penalty gives Valletta the three points against Mosta in a very dramatic game at the Hibernians Stadium.
Valletta had a very tough battle against well organised Mosta. After the opening win against Sliema Wanderers the champions struggled to get their second win. In the first half both sides lacked scoring dominated by plenty of drama as both teams had a player sent off.
Referee Malcolm Spiteri shown a straight red card to Mosta player Chinedu Oweregbulam on his poor challenge on Jhonnattann Benites after the 12minutes of the first half. Michael Mifsud a key player in the city’s attack had several chances but no luck to the international attacker.
Mosta kept their tempo high although playing with a man down they retained their tactical shape. Manuel Bartolo ex-Valletta goalkeeper had a great performance with his new club Mosta. Valletta where very close to open the score after Argentine midfielder Santiago Malano had a long-range shot saved by Manuel Bartolo.
Valletta battled hard to create momentum finding Mosta well disciplined that defended really well. 10 minutes away from the first half Bartolo beat away Claudio Pani’s drive where from a rebound Mifsud lost his balance as he was about to shoot.
With three minutes of the first half remaining, numerical parity was restored as Pani also received a straight red card for a mistimed challenge on Mosta left-back Adrian Caruana.
Valletta should have scored five minutes into the second half as Bartolo failed to hold Jhonnattann’s long-range free-kick but Romao, swooping onto the loose ball, headed over from close in.
The champions forged ahead 10 minutes into the second half. They were awarded a penalty after Kurt Magro was deemed to have brought down Jhonnattann inside the box and the Brazilian made no mistake from the spot.
The Argentine again advanced on the left before crossing for Mifsud who was anticipated by the indefatigable Dany Djoufack. The loose ball landed at the feet of Jhonnattann but he miscued his shot.
Jhonnattann, the Valletta forward was voted BOV player of the match.
Photos by Paul Zammit Cutajar
Article by SPM