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Qala Saints take top spot as Xewkija Tigers drop points

Qala Saints forward Lucas Matheus races through against SK Victoria Wanderers. Photo: Anthony Cassar

Qala Saints took sole leadership in the GFA Division One after defeating SK Victoria Wanderers 3-0 last weekend. 

This was Qala’s third consecutive win and have sent a real statement after a difficult start to the season.

On the other hand, the Wanderers, who had a positive start to the championship, once again failed to sparkle and ended up missing an opportunity to join the top positions.

Qala paved the win with two early goals scored by Igor Nedeljkovic. 

The Serbian striker, who was returning after a suspension, opened his scoring account for Qala Saints with a tap-in in the first minute of play.

The former Ħamrun Spartans striker doubled his team’s lead on 12 minutes with a fine shot following a counter break.

Qala administered their lead for most of the time before going on to add a third goal in the fourth minute of first-half stoppage time through a header by Joao Vitor Ferrari Silva.

The Wanderers tried to re-open the issue after the break but missed good opportunities through Emerson Zammit and Junior Conceicao Cabral, while an effort by Marcus Claudino Ramos was stopped by the crossbar.

Nadur Youngsters came from behind before overcoming Kerċem Ajax 3-1 and regained second place in the table. 

The Youngsters needed this win to make up for their previous disappointing results where they obtained just one point from two matches. 

The match turned out to be a nervous affair with both sides having a player sent off, while the Ajax had their coach and his assistant dismissed for dissent as the teams were heading to the half-time interval.

Kerċem took just two minutes to take the lead through Pablo Vinicius De Moraes Ferreira. 

The Ajax, however, were reduced to ten men on 34 minutes when Olimpio Gabriel Fernandes was booked twice in quick succession. 

Nadur took full advantage of their numerical advantage early in the second half as they turned the match in their favour.

Joseph Zammit headed home the equaliser on 50 minutes before Joao Vitor fired in the second goal two minutes later. 

On the hour mark, Nadur were awarded a penalty for a foul by Jason Theuma on Marcelo Barbosa and the Brazilian made no mistake from the spot.

On 64 minutes, Nadur had Marcelo Pereira Muniz dismissed for denying Vinicius Ferreira a clear goalscoring opportunity.

Xewkija Tigers lost top spot in the standings after they were held to a 2-2 draw by Oratory Youths.

Xewkija were keen to get back to winning ways while Oratory needed the three points to consolidate their good form of late.

Xewkija opened the score on 17 minutes through a header by Kevin Farrugia.

But Oratory hit back strongly and equalised a minute from the break through Rian Almedia Lopes. 

Oratory maintained their momentum after the break and took the lead on 47 minutes with a low drive by Joshua Buttigieg. 

Xewkija saved the result nine minutes from time with a fine strike from Aleksa Bozovic.

Challenge Cup

Victoria Hotspurs rescued a point in a 2-2 draw against Munxar Falcons to finish on top in the standings. 

The Hotspurs took the lead on 23 minutes through Lorenzo Atzori but Munxar levelled the score on 39 minutes with a goal from Vitor Gabriel Soares Souza. 

On the stroke of half time, the Hotspurs had Joey Grech sent off and Munxar took the lead on 62 minutes with another goal by Soarez Souza.

The Hotspurs grabbed the equaliser in stoppage time through Shaun Attard.

Żebbuġ Rovers strengthened their grip on third place with a 3-1 win over Sannat Lions.  Żebbuġ opened a two-goal lead during the first half through a brace by Miguel Angel Moreno Ampudia.

Sannat re-opened the issue on 89 minutes with a goal scored by Aaron Azzopardi.  But, the Rovers made sure of the win with a third goal in stoppage time from Stefan Farrugia.

St Lawrence Spurs earned their first points of the season following an impressive 7-0 win over Għarb Rangers. 

St Lawrence’s goals arrived through a brace by Victor John Saliba (9, 37), a goal by Mark Dingli (48) and four goals scored by Ayesller Carvalho (55, 65, 85, 87).


Playing on Friday – Gozo Stadium

GFA Division One

Xewkija T. vs Xagħra Utd          18.00

Għajnsielem vs Kerċem             20.00

Playing on Saturday – Kerċem

GFA Division One

Sannat L. vs St Lawrence          13.00

Żebbuġ R. vs Victoria H.            15.15

Għarb R. vs Munxar F. 17.30

Sunday – Gozo Stadium

GFA Division One

Qala Saints vs Oratory Y            13.00

Nadur Y. vs SK Victoria              15.00

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