The Malta Independent 20 March 2019, Wednesday

Fiorentina win VisitMalta triangular tournament

Henry Brincat Thursday, 10 January 2019, 00:07 Last update: about 3 months ago
Photos: Domenic Aquilina
Photos: Domenic Aquilina

Italian Serie A side Fiorentina won yesterday's triangular tournament at Ta' Qali having the better of local Premier League joint leaders Hibernians and Gzira United.

The tournament, consisting of three 45-minute matches, was unfortunately watched by a relatively small crowd due to the inclement weather. Suffice to say that most of the opening match between Hibernians and Gzira was played under a very heavy downpour.

In the second match - Fiorentina's first - they seemed to be playing on their own as they dominated Hibernians for the whole 45 minutes, scoring six times without reply.

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In the third and final match, it was Gzira who faced the Italians. Fiorentina took an early 3rd minute lead through a classic own goal by Sacha Borg.

Then they added a second goal five minutes later, but Gzira withstood some pressure to come out of their defensive shell being also unlucky not to score at least one goal.

At the end, Fiorentina were obviously deserved winners.

After the final whistle, Minister for Tourism Konrad Mizzi presented the trophy to Fiorentina.

 

Gzira beat depleted Hibs side 2-0

Hibernians         0
Gzira Utd           2

Hibernians: R. Briffa, A. Hogg, D. Vella, I. Ntow, N. Radojevic, B. Kristensen, M. Dias, J. Mbong, A. Agius, J. Degabriele, D. Xuereb, T. Fonseca, N. Marcolino, D. Abela, C. Zammit, M. Portelli, M. Ellul, A. Vella, JR Cassar, I. Falzon, A. Spiteri, R. Vella, M. Gatt, M. Pulis, T.Tabone Desira

Gzira Utd: J. Haber, A. Curmi, F. Barbosa, C. Gatt Baldacchino, S. Borg, R. Briffa, R. Soares, N. Muscat, E. Zarate, A. Cohen, J. Corbolan, A. Samb, J. Mengolo, L. Brincat, H. Garba, L. Moad, Z. Scerri, J. Schembri, S. Domoraud, J. Lokando

Referee: P. Farrugia

Asst refs: E. Spiteri, L. Portelli

4th official: A. Johnson

Scorers: Z. Scerri 16 pen, S. Borg 29

Hibernians and Gzira faced each other in the opener with the Maroons obtaining a 2-0 win.

Most of the 45-minute match was played in torrential rain which kept the crowds far from Ta' Qali.

Both teams, especially Hibernians, fielded a lot of their youngsters and newcomers, making it evident that they were taking this tournament as useful preparation for their forthcoming commitments in the Premier League.

Zachary Scerri opened the scoring from a penalty on 17 minutes and Sacha Borg scored the second on the 29th minute.

 

Hibernians no match for 'Viola'

Hibernians       0
Fiorentina        6

Hibernians: R. Briffa, A. Hogg, D. Vella, I. Ntow, N. Radojevic, B. Kristensen, M. Dias, J. Mbong, A. Agius, J. Degabriele, D. Xuereb, T. Fonseca, N. Marcolino, D. Abela, C. Zammit, M. Portelli, M. Ellul, A. Vella, JR Cassar, I. Falzon, A. Spiteri, R. Vella, M. Gatt, M. Pulis, T.Tabone Desira.

Fiorentina: MA Lafont, V. Laurini, C. Biraghi, N. Milenkovic, F. Ceccherini, CT Norgaard, V. Eysseric, G. Santos da Silva, G. Simeone, M. Pjaca, K. Mirallas, B. Dabo, D. Hancko, J. Veretout, RC Montiel, G. Pezzella, R. Sottil, M. Benassi, F. Chiesa, R. Fernandes, M. Graiciar, D. Vlahovic, L. Muriel, V. Franchescou, F. Brancolino, K. Diks, B. Dragowski, C. Thereau.

Referee: F. Zammit.

Asst refs: D. Sultana, R. Vella.

4th official: D. Agius.

Scorers: M. Benassi 7, 44, L. Muriel (3) 16 pen., 17, 38, C. Thereau 23,

In the second match, Hibernians faced Fiorentina in their typical formation with the exception of goalie Andrew Hogg and Bjorn Kristensen, but the Paolites were no match for the Serie A side which dominated so much that they could have won by a cricket score.

Scorers for the Italian side were Marco Benassi (2), Luis Muriel (3) and Cyril Thereau.

For the newly-signed Muriel, these were his first goals since joining the Viola last week.

Hibs' only effort on goal arrived on 33 minutes, a Fonseca cross-shot which went just wide.

On 38 minutes, Muriel scored his third goal for a great hat-trick on his debut for Fiorentina. Benassi sealed the issue with a 6th goal - his second - a minute from the end.

 

Second easy win for Fiorentina

Gzira Utd           0
Fiorentina         2

Fiorentina:  MA Lafont, V. Laurini, C. Biraghi, N. Milenkovic, F. Ceccherini, CT Norgaard, V. Eysseric, G. Santos da Silva, G. Simeone, M. Pjaca, K. Mirallas, B. Dabo, D. Hancko, J. Veretout, RC Montiel, G. Pezzella, R. Sottil, M. Benassi, F. Chiesa, R. Fernandes, M. Graiciar, D. Vlahovic, L. Muriel, V. Franchescou, F. Brancolino, K. Diks, B. Dragowski, C. Thereau.

Gzira Utd: J. Haber, A. Curmi, F. Barbosa, C. Gatt Baldacchino, S. Borg, R. Briffa, R. Soares, N. Muscat, E. Zarate, A. Cohen, J. Corbolan, A. Samb, J. Mengolo, L. Brincat, H. Garba, L. Moad, Z. Scerri, J. Schembri, S. Domoraud, J. Lokando.

Referee: A. M. Sant.

Asst refs: A. Camilleri, M. Scerri.

4th official: I. Barbara.

Scorers: S. Borg (og) 3, J. Veretout 8.

The third and final match between Gzira and Fiorentina resulted in another easy (0-2) win for the Italian Serie A side, but Gzira provided them with stiffer opposition.

Fiorentina manager Stefano Pioli made use of players from the rest of the squad but were still dominant.

They took an early 3rd minute lead through a classic own goal by Borg and Veretout added a second five minutes later.

From then on, Fiorentina were opposed by a strong Gzira defence and the Maroons also had their good moments up front with Garba first missing a great chance and then Mengolo hitting the upright. Later Garba had a good effort saved by goalie Dragowski.

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