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December 19, 2021

Hotspurs defeated by title challengers Nadur Youngester

(MD 9) – GFA BOV Gozo Football League Division I (MD 9) – Sat 18 Dec 2021 – Gozo Stadium
Nadur Youngsters FC – FT (4-2) – Victoria Hotspurs FC

16’ (0-1) Robinson Blandon Rendon
26’ (2-2) Olimpio Gabriel Fernandes

Nadur Youngsters confirmed their supremacy in Gozitan football when they battled past Victoria Hotspurs 4-2 despite playing for much of the encounter with a player less.

The clash between Nadur and Victoria was the main match of the weekend as Nadur were aiming to prolong their unbeaten run in the championship and defend their six-point lead over their closest rivals.

On the other hand, the Hotspurs were confident that they could win points against the favourites for the title and move away from the current sixth position on the table.

For this match, the Hotspurs had Henrique De Souza Maciel who was making a return after some months away from Malta, and his presence was an added source of motivation for the Hotspurs to end their calendar commitments with an important victory.

The Hotspurs were the more offensive side in the opening minutes and looked to have gained the edge when Nadur Youngsters were reduced to ten men after nine minutes.

Gianluca Muscat was shown a straight red card after denying Robinson Blandon Rendon a clear scoring opportunity.

But the Youngsters kept their poise and came close to taking the lead when efforts by Ederson were somehow kept out by goalkeeper Daniel Spiteri.

It was the Hotspurs who took the lead on 16 minutes when Maciel fired home after a good personal move.

The Hotspurs seemed overconfident and Nadur soon punished their opponents when they turned the result in their favour.

The Youngsters levelled the score on 21 minutes through a tap-in by Judivan Flor Da Silva following a low cross by Marcelo Barbosa and two minutes later the same Barbosa made it 2-1 with a fine shot.

The Hotspurs, however, managed to restore parity on 26 minutes when Nadur’s goalkeeper partially saved a free kick by Rendon and from the rebound Olimpio Gabriel Fernandes deposited the ball into an empty net.

Just before half-time, Nadur were also unlucky when Marcelo Barbosa saw his curling shot from a free-kick stopped by the post.

Nadur looked a revitalised side in the second half and took control of play with Victoria’s keeper often called to make important interventions to keep his side in contention.

Nadur regained the lead on 75 minutes with a fine shot from inside the area by Joseph Zammit following a cross by Ederson.

Two minutes from time, the Hotspurs also ended with ten players as Oliver Cremona was sent off for a second bookable offence.

Nadur sealed their win in the second minute of stoppage time when Judivan seized possession on the edge of the area, rounded the goalkeeper and deposited the ball into an empty net.

Report: Times of Malta
Photos: Paul Scicluna

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