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Hibernians drop precious points as Correa comes to Sirens’ rescue

Bjorn Kristensen charges forward for Hibernians against Sirens. Photo: Darrin Zammit Lupi


Muritala 27


Correa 74


I. Kone-6, F. Apap-6 (74 G. Llerena), K. Shaw-4, J. Grech-6, B. Kristensen-6 (81 J, Degbriele), Z. Grech-5.5, JV. Florencio-6, A. Agius-5 (81 Thaylor), G. Artiles-5.5, Y. Muritala-6, A. Diakite-6.5


M. Grech-6, G. Camilleri-6, M. Pereira-6, K. Sano-5 (64 D. Jackson), R. Tachikawa-6.5, A. Borg-6, J. Walker-6, A. Vaikainah-5, A. Cini-5, R. Correa Duarte-6.5, S. Sessegnon-5 (73 A. Vella)

Referee: Darryl Agius.

Yellow cards: Apap, Tachikawa, Correa.

BOV Player of the match: Ali Diakite (Hibernians).

A late goal from Ricardo Correa earned Sirens a draw to extend their unbeaten run to five  games and put a major dent on Hibernians‘ hopes of securing European football this summer.

Hibernians went in front when Yunasa Muritala scored with an outrageous flick. But Correa punished their profligacy with a late equaliser.

The final result was a real disappointment for Hibernians who will go into their final game against Floriana with their fate not in their hands as even if they secure the three points against the Greens it might not be enough to qualify for the UEFA Conference League qualifiers this summer.

Fully aware that they couldn’t afford to drop any points from this match, the Paolites cast aside their usual defensive instincts and threw men forward in search of an early opener.

Hibernians dominated the early stages and Yunusa Muritala was particularly prevalent.

A link-up between Gabriel Artiles and Jake Grech created the first chance of the half. The Spaniard’s picked Jake Grech only for Matthew Grech to produce a fine save.

From the rebound, Muritala steered a side-footed shot agonisingly wide in front of a gaping goal.

Another chance arrived immediately, and the Nigernian striker redeemed himself with a superbly-struck half-volley that flew past Grech after being served by Bjorn Kristensen.

Hibernians continued to dominate possession without creating any clear cut chances other than Joao Vitor blasting wide from a good position.

On 54 minutes, Grech was guilty of excessive altriuism when he elected to square the ball for Joao Vitor instead of going for goal when in front of the Sirens goalkeeper and another goal scoring opportunity went abegging.

Hibs’ profligacy was punished as the Hibs defence allowed Correa the freedom to roam and cause damage.

Kurt Shaw’s error in the box, fumbling Correa’s cross allowed the Uruguayan winger to lob the ball over Ibrahim Kone.

Silvio Vella threw in the returning Jurgen Degabriele, back after a hamstring injury, and Thaylor in a bid to find a late winner but to no avail as Sirens held on for a hard-earned point.

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