The Malta Independent 17 July 2019, Wednesday

BOV Premier League: History written by Santa Lucia as they gain promotion to the Premier Division

Simon Farrugia Sunday, 5 May 2019, 18:55 Last update: about 3 months ago
Photo: Trevor Sollars
Photo: Trevor Sollars

St Andrew's                    1                               
Sta Lucia                         4

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St Andrew's: M. Calleja Cremona, R. Martin, T. Blagrove,  A.J. Friggieri, J. Farrugia, K. Magro, A. Borg, J. Walker ( A. Magri Overend 82'), M. Davis, L. Sciberras (D. Debono 67'), M. Woo Ling (K. Reid 64')

Sta Lucia: R. Caruana, J. Busuttil, D. Usuga Mendoza Jackson, L.D. Mosquera Segura, J. Suda (K. Vella 83'), K. Ante Rosero (N. Borg 78'), J. Magri Overend (N. Micallef 85'), K. Pulo, D. Vukovic, P. Teixeira Maia, L. Galea

Referee: Etienne Mangion

Asst refs: Alan Camilleri, Thomas Debono

4th official: Fyodor Zammit

Scorers: Teixeira Maia 10', 75' pen., Davis 11', Usuga Mendoza Jackson 17', 60'

Yellow cards: Blagrove, Martin, Friggieri, Teixeira Maia

Red Card: Blagrove (St Andrew's)

Attendance: 592

Santa Lucia won the Premier League play off when they defeated St Andrew's by a clear 4-1. Apart from grabbing the final slot in the Premier League they made history since they became the first team ever from the First Division to win the play off.

The first minutes of the match were rather entertaining and only two minutes had elapsed when a headed effort by Farrugia was blocked by Caruana. On nine minutes St Andrew's went near to breaking the deadlock when Friggieri had his shot cleared off the line by Vukovic.

But it was Santa Lucia who forged ahead a minute later when following a swift counter attack Patrick Teixeira Maia lobbed over Calleja Cremona. But their joy was short lived as just a minute later the teams were on level terms.  Martin Davis made his way into the opposing area and his fierce shot gave Caruana no chance at all.

Sta Lucia showed strength to react and in the 16th minute a Suda free kick was turned into a corner by Calleja Cremona. But a minute later Sta Lucia were back in front. A Suda corner created havoc in the opposing area with shots by Magri Overend and Ante Rosero being blocked, the ball fell on the edge of the area in Usuga Mendoza Jackson's direction whose low drive found the corner of the net.

On 26 minutes a Karl Pulo acute shot ended inches wide.  With St Andrew's responding just past the half hour when Davis rounded the Santa Lucia goalkeeper playing the ball onto the onrushing Walker only  for the latter's shot to sail over the bar.

Four minutes from the end of the first half Calleja Cremona saved on Ante Roso. And on the other end Friggieri shot high when well positioned.

On resumption in the 48th minute a solo run by Farrugia ended with his shot over the bar. In the 52nd minute the same player had his shot on the turn tipped over the bar by Caruana.  

But on the hour Santa Lucia increased their lead when off a Suda corner, Adrian Borg's short clearance found Usuga Mendoza Jackson whose headed effort found the corner of the net.

On 68 minutes a Farrugia shot was palmed into a corner by Caruana. But Santa Lucia sealed the issue and made Premier Division football a certainty next year when in the 75th minute they were awarded a penalty after Mosquera Segura was brought down in the area. From the resultant kick Teixeira Maia converted in style.

The celebrations were now in full swing by the numerous Santa Lucia supporters who will now play Premier Division football next season fot the first time in their history. Indeed a big feat for such a small club.

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