GFA Gozo Football League Division II
Gozo Stadium – 9 April 2019
Qala S FC : 0
Xuereb, C. Gafa, B. Sammut, A. Isaac, A. Komljenovic, M. Cefai, S. P. Spiteri, J. Buttigieg, M.Vella, M. Pace, A. A. Xerri.
Xaghra U FC : 1 (J. Camilleri 66’pen)
Attard, J. Bajada, J. Xiberras, D. Bajada, S. Galea (E. Xiberras), J. Camilleri, S. Sultana (A. Farrugia), M. Mamo, S. F. Bajada, G. Farrugia, T. M. Dos Santos.
A penalty scored by Xaghra’s Johnny Camilleri midway through the second half was enough for the Blues to earn three precious points from the match against bottom-placed Qala Saints. With this result, Xaghra regained sole leadership with three points more than the other challengers for promotion Sannat Lions although the latter have a game in hand. With this win, Xaghra also made sure that they remain serious contenders for the title and promotion as they only have one game left until the end of the campaign, which will be the direct clash with the same Sannat. In the match against Qala, the Blues must have been overconfident as they struggled to impose their superiority over the less quoted Qala Saints who were also playing without some of their regular players.
During the first part of the match, Xaghra tried to put pressure on their opponents in an effort to score an early goal. On 10 minutes a close ranged shot by Xaghra’s Johnny Camilleri was blocked to a corner by Mikail Vella and on 16 minutes Qala’s keeper Omar Xuereb turned to a corner a free kick by Gabriel Farrugia. One minute later Xaghra’s Tiago Melo Dos Santos had a shot from an angled position that ended wide and on 20 minutes Qala’s keeper was again called to make a difficult save following a low strike by Thiago Melo Dos Santos. Four minutes later goalie Omar Xuereb was well placed to block another effort by Xaghra’s Brazilian striker and Qala replied on 30 minutes through a personal action by Aleksandar Komljenovic that was saved by Xaghra’s keeper Owen Attard and in the first minute of stoppage time before half time a free kick by Christopher Gafa ended just over Xaghra’s goal.
After the break, Xaghra continued to dictate matters and on 49 minutes they were also unlucky when a close ranged shot by Johnny Camilleri was stopped by the post. On 59 minutes a lob from long distance by Xaghra’s Marlon Mamo ended high and three minutes later Qala’s keeper Omar Xuereb made a difficult save following a close ranged shot by Thiago Melo Dos Santos after receiving form Etienne Xiberras. On 66 minutes Xaghra were awarded a penalty for a foul by Mikail Vella in Thiago Melo Dos Santos and Johnny Camilleri converted from the spot kick to score the goal that at the end decided the issue. Qala were not demoralised and replied on 69 minutes Xaghra’s keeper Owen Attard saved a shot from long distance by Michael Pace. The same goalkeeper was again called to make a good save on 73 minutes to block a low shot by Aleksandar Komljenovic and two minutes later a free kick by Qala’s Michael Pace lifted over Xaghra’s goal from close distance following a free kick by Bernard Sammut. On 81 minutes Xaghra could have made sure of the win but a shot on the run by Thiago Melo Dos Santos missed the target and two minutes later Johnny Camilleri had another attempt from a good position that ended away from Qala’s goal so that the score remained unchanged until the final whistle.
Referee: Sandro Spiteri