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Effiong, Alves on the mark to floor Floriana

Justin Grioli (right) of Balzan tussles for the ball with Floriana's Steve Pisani. Photo: Domenic Borg

Justin Grioli (right) of Balzan tussles for the ball with Floriana's Steve Pisani. Photo: Domenic Borg

BALZAN                         2

Effiong 52

Alves 90

FLORIANA                     0

Balzan scored two second-half goals to see off Floriana at the Tedesco Stadium on Monday.

After a goalless first half it was Alfred Effiong and Alex Alves who procured the goals that put the Reds third in the standings on the 15-point mark level with Valletta and Hibernians.

The Greens almost took the lead after seven minutes when Clayton Failla’s inswinging cross was inadvertently deflected by Andrija Majdevac towards his goal but Enzo Ruiz incredibly flicked the ball onto the post with Steve Sultana beaten.

Balzan took some time to settle down and they had to wait until the 22nd minute to create their first scoring opportunity.

Alex Alves hit a low cross that fell into the feet of Alfred Effiong but the Malta striker hit straight into the hands of Ini Akpan.

Ten minutes from the break, Elkin Serrano Valero connected to Correa’s inswinger but his downward header finished just wide.

Balzan took the ground running in the second half and they took the lead on 52 minutes.

Alves’s cross was deflected into the path of Effiong and the Balzan striker blasted the ball past Akpan.

More woes followed for Floriana as on the hour striker Varela suffered an ankle injury and was replaced by Ronaldinho.

Alves continued to torment the Greens with his pace and on 75 minutes he did well to release Uros Ljubomirac on the edge of the area but his shot finished wide.

Sultana came to Balzan’s rescue three minutes from time as the Malta goalkeeper produced a fine reflex save to deny Ruiz following a Failla free-kick.

Balzan sealed the points in stoppage time, when in a quick brace Effiong released Alves who burst through and beat Akpan with a firm drive.

Balzan's Alex Alves was voted as the BOV Player of the Match.

Standings provided by Sofascore LiveScore
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