Two goals in last 15 minutes of the second-half were enough for Gżira United to record their first win of the 2019-20 BOV Premier League against Balzan.
For this game, Balzan had Uros Ljubomirac, Luke Montebello, Andrija Majdevac and Lydon Micallef missing through injuries. At the other end, Gzira U had Zachary Scerri missing through suspension while Juan Corbolan and Andrew Cohen did not make to the starting line-up.
Gzira United F.C. vs. Balzan F.C. 2-0Kampjonat Premier | Il-ħames ġurnata (29 ta' Settembru)Filmati ta' TVM Sport
Posted by Replay (Net Television) on Sunday, September 29, 2019
The first half was balanced although chances were few and far between at both ends. Neither goalkeeper was seriously tested as the two defences were well in control over the two respective attackers.
In the first half, Balzan seemed to have the better chances, but it was Gzira who went closest through a Amadou Samb shot which might have been cleared from behind the goal line.
In the second half, Gzira U were the better team creating a good number of chances although they scored only two goals.
Balzan opened on attack and in the 3rd minute Ivan Bozovic tried his luck from outside the area, but the ball finished over the bar.
Soon after, in a swift move, it was Steven Pisani who crossed low into the Gzira area, but Paul Fenech hit the ball well over the bar from an ideal central position.
In the 18th minute, Arthur Oyama received a good cross by Jefferson De Assis but his low shot was saved by Balzan goalkeeper Kristijan Naumovoski.
Soon after at the other end, Gzira goalkeeper Justin Haber saved oven an attempt by Alfred Effiong.
Following this, the match degenerated as neither side seemed to be able to create anything noticeable, but in the 29th minute, Paul Fenech had a good effort being saved by Justin Haber.
In the 34th minute, Amadou Samb received an assist from Jefferson De Assis, dribbled round goalkeeper Kristijan Naumovski and his goal-bound shot was cleared off the goal line by Augustine Loof. Gzira protested strongly with the official but the referee who close to the action, and his assistant, ignored the protests and waved play on.
In the 44th minute Martin Davis made his way into the Balzan area, but Aleksandar Kosoric’s was there to clear in time.
The last chance of the first half came from Fernando Barbosa, but the Gżira defender failed to direct his header on target.
The second half started with the Gzira in attack, but it was Balzan who had the first good opportunity with a shot by Ricardo Correa which finished just over the bar.
In the 56th minute, following a free-kick, an effort by Martin Davis was cleared from over the line with a header by Aleksandar Kosoric.
At the other end, Justin Haber blocked an effort by Ricardo Correa.
Gzira insisted and in the 64th minute, a cross-shot by Gianmarco Conti sailed across goal as Jefferson De Assis failed to make contact in front of goal.
Two minutes later, Amadou Samb advanced into the Balzan area, but his shot was palmed out by Kristijan Naumovski.
Gzira took the lead in the 75th minute. Following a cross by Clifford Gatt Baldacchino, a header by Jefferson De Assis hit the upright and substitute ANDREW COHEN was at the right place at the right time to have the simplest task of placing the ball into an empty net.
Balzan put everything in front searching for an equalizer. In the 84th minute they were close when an effort by Aleksandar Kosoric was deviated just past the post with goalkeeper Justin Haber beaten.
However four minutes from time, Gzira sealed the issue with a second goal when Gianmarco Conti set JEFFERSON DE ASSIS who, completely unmarked beat goalkeeper Kristijan Naumovski.
GZIRA : Justin Haber, Fernando Barbosa, Gianmarco Conti, Nikolai Muscat, Rodolfo Soares, Clifford Gatt Baldacchino, Sacha Borg, Amadou Samb (Luca Brincat 89′), Arthur Henrique Oyama (Andrew Cohen 68′), Martin Davis, Jefferson de Assis.
BALZAN : Kristijan Naumovski, Augustine Loof, Aleksandar Kosoric, Nenad Sljivic, Steve Pisani, Michael Johnson, Paul Fenech, Alfred Effiong, Ivan Bozovic, Stefan Dimic (Ryan Scicluna 73′), Ricardo Calixto Correa Duarte.
Referee: Matthew DeGabriele
BOV Player of the Match: Jefferson de Assis