Birkirkara trash Mosta
Birkirkara 7, Mosta 1
Birkirkara put the lame showing against Valletta behind them, to turn on the style to thump Steve D’Amato troops 7-1.
While Jhonnattan and Haruna Shola Shodiya took centre-stage, this was a magnificent collective display by Birkirkara with Ryan Camrenzuli, Paul Fenech and Edward Herrera also delivering excellent performances.
Birkirkara pit their noses in front after only four minutes. Fastening on to an accurate pass from the right flank, Jhonnattann outpaced the Mosta defence before sending the ball behind Farrugia and into the net.
On the quarter of the hour mark, the Stripes should have increased their lead when they won a penalty after Fernando Apap was adjudged to have handled the ball in the box in a bid to block Shodiya Haruna Shola shot on goal. Shodiya’s first attempt was a lesson in how to take a penalty, sending Farrugia the wrong way. Referee Chris Lautier ordered the penalty to be retaken on the grounds that a host of players invaded the penalty area before the spot–kick.This time, however, he stuttered and telegraphed his intentions with Farrugia producing a brilliant save to block the Nigerian’s effort. Mosta were let off the hook but not for long.
After 25 minutes, Fenech’s shot hit the crossbar and the rebound fell kindly to the midfielder, as he squared for the unmarked Shodiya who flicked home. Yet Mosta’s early toils came to the fore, five minutes later when Fenech picked up the ball near the halfway line and launched a spectacular long range pass for Jhonnattann who scored with a delicate lob over goalkeeper Farrugia from the edge of the box.
Mosta managed to pull one back just before half-time. The Blues won a free-kick on the right flank, Mitev looked up before he directed a 30-metre shot in under the bar and off Reuben Gauci’s vainly outstretched hand.
But there was no reprieve for the confused Mosta after the break when Jhonnattann completed his hat-trick just before the hour mark.
Receiving a pass from Shodiya, the nippy Brazilian cut in from the right before guiding a diagonal shot past Farrugia. That was to be Jhonnattann’s final contribution as he soon made way for Jean Pierre Mifsud Triganza, receiving a standing ovation on his way out.
Showing some deft footwork on the right, substitute Hernandez threw Manolito Micallef off the balance before his pass was weighted perfectly down the right channel into which Edward Herrara scampered as he headed the ball into the net.
Few moments later, Birkirkara struck their sixth goal and Shodiya his second. Profiting from a short clearance by Byran Agius, Shodiya beat Farrugia from close-range.
Seven minutes from time, Joselito’pass for Herrera caught the Mosta rearguard cold, the former Hibernians midfielder show his fine techinque as he chested down the ball before serving Mifsud Triganza who beat Farrugia with a beatifully-struck shot from a tight angle.