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Messias inspires Marsaxlokk to crushing win over Naxxar Lions in league opener

Marsaxlokk's Nikolai Muscat (left) tries to burst forward against Naxxar Lions. Photo: Dominic Borg


Messiah 15, 89; Muscat 38

Fernandinho 55, Akinbule 70


De Carvalho 58


M. Drobnjak-6, Weder-5, D. Zerafa-5.5 (64 R. Sousa), N. Muscat-6, Y. Messias-7, J. Walker-6, G. Camilleri-5, L. Aguirre-7 (81 D. Bonnici), D. Pires (75 J. Ghio), Fernandinho-6 (75 D. Mifsud), A. Obonogwu-5 (64 S. Akinbule).


M. Debono-4, N. Micallef-4, F. Barbosa-6 (82 A. Azzopardi), N. Pace Cocks-5 (82 G. Bonanno), P. Servo de Carvalho-5 (75 D Falzon), E. Cerqueira-4, R. Cassar-5, Elizeu-5 (76 R. Mercieca), W. Moreira-5, Maicon-5.5, J. Moura-5 (75 J. Ellul).

Yellow card: Aguirre,

Referee Slobodan Petrovic.

BOV Player of the match: Yuri Messias (Naxxar Lions).

Marsaxlokk produced a scintillating attacking performance to start the new Premier League season with a statement victory over Naxxar Lions.

New midfielder Yuri Messias scored twice and set up another as Marsaxlokk cruised to a comfortable win over newly-promoted Naxxar Lions.

The Brazilian, formerly of Naxxar, made the breakthrough, and then, Nikolai Muscat saw his shot creeping through Matthias Debono’s feet.

The Lions grafted hard, but they lacked a cutting edge upfront as their chances of recovery were all but over midway through the second half when Messias, set up Fernandinho to find the net and restored Marsaxlokk’s two-goal cushion.

Substitute Sunday Akinbule extended Winston Muscat’s lead and Messias wrapped up the match with a deft finish.

Marsaxlokk sprung out of the blocks brilliantly to break the deadlock on the quarter-hour mark. Jacob Walker cross from the right was met by Anthony Obonogwu who chested the ball for Messias, and the Brazilian midfielder thundered a finish past Debono.

Aguirre should have doubled the lead a few minutes later but Debono saved smartly. Boosted by the goal, Marsaxlokk began to dominate proceedings with Messias’ pace and trickery constantly troubling the Naxxar defence.

On 38 minutes, Aguirre had a free-kick saved by Debono, but Muscat turned the rebound over the keeper and into the net.

Soon after the break, Fernandinho burst clean through on goal, and it was no surprise when Marsaxlokk added to their goal tally.

At this point, they looked to have had the final say on the game but three minutes later, Naxxar finally got their reward when Pablo de Carvalho waltzed through the Marsaxlokk defence to reduce the arrears.

Yet, Akinbule, a second-half substitute for Obonogwu, ensured that the Southseasiders were not finished when rifling home a volley from the edge of the box.

One minute from time, Messias lashed home with a low drive to confirm victory for Winston Muscat’s side.

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