Balzan FC secured a place in the second qualifying round of the UEFA Europa League despite a narrow defeat of 2-1 to Keşla FK of Azerbaijan at the Dalga Arena in Baku as they win 5-3 on aggregate following the fine 4-1 win at the Centenary Stadium last week.
Therefore Balzan qualify for the first time for the second qualifying round of the UEFA Europa League on their fourth attempt, having participated in this competition for the past four years. In the second qualifying round, Balzan meet FK Slovan Bratislava of Slovakia – first leg to be played at home on 26th July 2018.
In Baku, a penalty converted by CESAR MEZA COLLI on the 11th minute renewed Keşla’s hopes of staging a comeback. They held the initiative throughout the ninety minutes having various attempts at goal with Balzan more intentioned on avoid conceding a second goal.
One minute in added time, Keşla scored the second goal through SLAVIK ALKHASOV and now the hosts started to believe more in themselves as they were just one goal away from qualification as a 3-0 win would have seen them through on the away goals rule.
However six minutes in added time, substitute ANDRIJA MAJDEVAC pulled one back for Balzan to secure qualification for Balzan.
The young Serbian striker, who had replaced Bojan Kaljevic five minutes from time, was immediately sent off after receiving a second yellow card.