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World-Cup bound Haiti too strong for Malta women

MALTA 0-5 HAITI
K. Louis 16; B. Louis 25; Borgella 37, 75; Mondesir 45

An early blitz propelled Haiti to a warm-up victory against the Malta women’s national team in Switzerland, on Saturday.

The Concacaf side are currently involved in a European training camp that will lead them to this month’s debut in the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

As expected, Malta found the going tough against the 53rd-ranked side in the world, with Haiti dominating proceedings and creating various goal scoring chances.

The Haiti defeat also halts Manuela Tesse’s mini-run of straight wins after collecting victories in her opening three games in charge of Malta – twice against Luxembourg and Estonia.

The Italian coach handed Yulya Carella her national team debut as the San Ġwann player formed the front three alongside Maria Farrugia and Maya Lucia.

Emma Lipman, who is expected to remain at Como Women next season, captained the side at Stade D’Octudre of Martigny, Switzerland.

Tesse’s objective was to use this friendly to start preparing for September’s Nations League commitments with Malta launching their campaign away against Latvia.

Nonetheless, she did have a depleted squad with plenty of key players absent since this match was scheduled outside the FIFA international window which is officially pencilled for July 10.

Moreover, Malta faced a side that is in a better physical shape as they gear up to face England, Denmark and China in the World Cup.

Haiti were missing star player Melchie Dumornay – 19, just transferred to Olympique Lyon – as a precaution with the Concacaf side set to face South Korea in another preparatory friendly ahead of their World Cup commitments.

The Concacaf side will be playing in their first ever World Cup tournament and will face European champions England, Denmark and China in Australia/New Zealand.

Haiti were definitely going to be a threat in aerial duels with the Concacaf side focusing on whipping crosses from both flanks to try and break down the Maltese defensive line.

Roselord Borgella, one of the most experienced players in Haiti’s side, squandered a big chance for her nation when she sailed the ball over the bar from inside the small area.

It was no surprise, then, when Haiti forged ahead through a Ketna Louis’ header who beat Janice Xuereb to the far post.

Malta tried to force their way back into the game with Rachel Cuschieri, who will remain at Sampdoria next season, threatening with a long-distance effort but to no avail.

However, it was Haiti who scored the game’s next goal when Batcheba Louis’ cross shot was mishandled by Xuereb, sending the ball into her own net.

Borgella came close to Haiti’s third with a brilliant strike, just inches wide from Xuereb as the Caribbean side continued to show their superiority against Tesse’s selection.

Ten minutes from half-time, Borgella was not to be denied when she fired home from point-blank range to extend Haiti’s lead.

Just before half-time, Haiti’s captain Nerilia Mondesir scored her nation’s fourth goal when she beat Xuereb from close-range.

At the break, Tesse introduced another debutant in Georgiana Mifsud who replaced Mġarr United’s Bajada as right back.

Moreover, Patricia Ebejer took over from Xuereb between the sticks while Brenda Borg came on instead of Carella.

Borg, though, had to leave the field inside the first ten minutes of the second half after picking up what it looked like a hamstring injury.

Swieqi United’s captain Dorianne Theuma was introduced in her place.

Past the hour mark, Ebejer denied Haiti from the penalty spot after blocking Ketna Louis’ effort.

Nonetheless, Haiti still found their fifth through Borgella who beat Ebejer from outside the penalty area.

STARTING FORMATIONS

MALTA
J. Xuereb (46 P. Ebejer); E. Lipman, J. Dimech, R. Cuschieri (78 Y. Carabott), Y. Carella (46 B. Borg) (54 D. Theuma), M. Farrugia, M. Lucia (85 M. Sciberras), S. Zammit, E. Xuereb, N. Sciberras, R. Bajada (46 G. Mifsud),

HAITI
L. Larco; R. Mathurin, T. Joseph, J. Limage, C. Surpris, K. Louis, S. Jeudy, N. Mondesir, D. Pierre-Louis, B. Louis, R. Borgella.

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