Despite playing for an hour and a half with ten men, Gudja United earned a point against neighbours Santa Lucia.
Gudja, have now collected their third point following a third draw in five matches while Santa Lucia obtained their first point of the season.
Following the dismissal of Marvin Santiago Angulo Pereira, Santa Lucia was expected to gain the upper hand but Jesmond Zammit’s side shared the exchanges throughout the first half and the beginning of the second half. Later in the game, Santa Lucia pushed hard for the winner but the Gudja rearguard, with goalkeeper Yaren Sozer in excellent form, kept them at bay.
Santa Lucia had a first attempt at goal after six minutes when Jan Tanti concluded a good move with a shot from outside the area ending wide.
Gudja were reduced to ten men on 18 minutes when Trustin Farrugia handed Angulo a straight red card after the Colombian forward kicked an opponent.
However, Gudja went close on 28 minutes.
Matias Muchardi delivered a freekick from the right and Karl Micallef tested Celio with a header which was parried by the Santa Lucia goalkeeper.
The Saints responded with a fierce shot by Jed Valletta was neutralised by Sozer on 31 minutes and a minute later, a cross-shot by Jan Tanti from the left ended just wide.
Santa Lucia threatened once again late in the first half with a Dexter Xuereb effort which ended just over the bar.
Six minutes in the second half, Abou Toure concluded a good run on the right with an assist for Gabriel Mensah who however hit incredibly over.
On 62 minutes, Steve Pisani tested the Gudja goalkeeper direct from a corner from the left.
Tatsuro Nagamatsu went close for Santa Lucia with a curved shot from outside the area but Sozer performed a good save on 68 minutes and two minutes later, Toure headed high off a corner by Muchardi.
Mensah was unlucky to conclude just wide with a lob from the right with goalkeeper Celio beaten.
Santa Lucia threatened once again on 79 minutes, this time through Adam Bradshaw whose powerful drive from outside the area scraped past the post.
Deep into stoppage time, Santa Lucia almost notched the winner but substitute Wagner’s header, off a Steve Pisani freekick from the right, was neutralised by Sozer.
SANTA LUCIA 0
GUDJA UNITED 0
Celio, M. Ellul, S. Pisani, T. Nagamatsu (79 L. Sena), D. Xuereb, J. Pisani, J. Tanti (46 Hulk), G. Virano (46 A. Bradshaw), A. Piazza, J. Valletta (55 Wagner), S. Xerri.
Y. Sozer, Brenner, M. Angulo, M. Muchardi, J. Arthur, G. Mensah (90 R. Mandes), C. Borg-5.5 (S. Cipriott), N. Tabone, K. Micallef, A. Toure, M. Esposito.
Referee: Trustin Farrugia Cann.
Yellow cards: Virano, Ellul, Muchardi, Sena, Hulk.
Red card: Angulo (G) 18
Full article, here.