Reid 38, 87
G. Kitanov, O. El Hasni, U. Arias, K. Reid, J. Busuttil (57 A. Magri Overend), Matheus (75 K. Nwoko), D. Vella, N. Garcia, C. Zammit Lonardelli, M. Valadzko, A. Kouro.
I. Kone, F. Apap, K. Shaw, R. Bairam (73 A. Attard), A. Hovhannisyan, J. Degabriele, B. Kristensen, Z. Grech (79 Guedes), S. Okoh (46 A. Bruno), G. Bastianos, R. Antwi.
Referee Slobodan Petrovic.
Yellow cards Reid, Kristensen, Bairam, Garcia, Grech, Reid, Attard, Apap.
BOV Player of the match Kemar Reid (Floriana).
Floriana FC continued to add fuel to their title ambitions as the Greens emerged victorious from their top-of-the-table clash against Hibernians at the National Stadium.
Kemar Reid turned out to be Floriana’s hero last night as the Jamaican forward scored two spectacular goals that not only preserved the team’s 100 per cent record in the Premier League but also put them three points clear at the top of the standings, ahead of Ħamrun Spartans match against Gudja United today.
It was another impressive display from the Greens who right from the outset looked to be well deployed tactically by their coach Mauro Camoranesi as they held the edge over their opponents for much of the match.
In fact, Floriana had the better chances and could have scored a more pronounced victory had they taken the chances that came their way.
Yesterday’s win further underlines Floriana’s potential this season as the Greens have now registered their second success over one of the top sides in the division, following their 2-0 win over Birkirkara last weekend, and no doubt, based on these performances, they are set to be the leading candidates to challenge Ħamrun Spartans for the Premier League crown.
The match turned out into a hard-fought affair right from the outset with both sides pushing forward on every occasion they were in possession, giving an early indication of their intention to go out for the three points.
While Floriana enjoyed the bigger share of possession it was Hibernians who threatened first when on 18 minutes Ferdinando Apap connected to Jurgen Degabriele’s delivery from a free-kick bu this overhead short finished wide.
Floriana’s response arrived on 21 minutes but Dunstan Vella’s low shot offered little trouble for goalkeeper Ibrahim Kone.
There was little separating either side with both sets of defences showing great composure to keep out their opponents with scoring chances few and far between.
In fact, we had till the 38th minute for another opening when Armen Hovhannisyan showed great skill to turn past two defenders but his shot went wide.
The match finally came to life on 38 minutes when Floriana took the leading with a fine individual strike from Kemar Reid.
The Jamaican forward seized possession in midfield and despite being some 30 metres out he hit a rasping angled drive that gave no chance to goalkeeper Ibrahim Kone.
Hibernians looked rattled and on 41 minutes Matheus should have doubled Floriana’s lead.
Reid was again involved when he fed Valadzko who squared the ball into the path of the Brazilian forward who fired over with Kone only to beat.
The Greens almost were made to pay for this miss when Hibernians were denied by the woodwork from an equaliser.
From a corner action, Bastianos’s delivery reached the unmarked Ferdinando Apap who saw his downward header come off the upright.
After the break, one expected Hibs to step up their game in search of an equaliser with Nisevic roping in Alex Bruno for Samuel Okoh.
However, it was Floriana who came close on 58 minutes as the Paolites failed to clear a cross, with the ball falling to Max Valasko but his angled drive flashed wide.
Hibernians looked short of ideas when pushing forward as their forays were continuously being closed down by the solid Floriana defence.
Ten minutes from time, Dunstan Vella, facing his former team-mates for the first time, had the chance to put his name on the scoresheet when he stormed inside the area but was denied by Kone.
Floriana did manage to grab a second ‘killer goal’ three minutes from time when Reid profited from some lax defending from Hibernians to seize the ball just outside the area and hit a rasping low drive that gave no chance to Kone.
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