FLORIANA 2 TARXIEN RAINBOWS 3

Tarxien Rainbows finished their best season in recent years with an entertaining victory over Floriana. The encounter was without any particular interest – as all issues have now been decided.

For the Rainbows, under the able hands of Jacques Scerri, it was a satisfactory season and they will be looking forward for an improvement next season.

Both clubs had nothing to play for bar pride but the teams’ spirited opening suggested that both coaches had demanded a committed showing from their players to conclude a positive season on a winning note.

It was Floriana who were faster out of the blocks when leading top-scorer Mario Fontanella ran to a ball from Mauricio Villa but Andrea Cassar pulled off a great save to deny the Italian striker.

Tarxien broke the ice shortly afterwards. Shy the quarter of the hour mark, Alex Nilsson exposing the Floriana’s defensive failings as he burst clear before hitting past Matthew Grech. The Swedish striker got injured when his leg was caught under his body as he fell to the ground and had to be carried off and substituted by Bruno de Giglio.

The game continued to ebb and flow The woodwork denied Floriana an equaliser four minutes later, when Fontonella’s pile-drive crashed against the bar with Andrea Cassar beaten.

Past the half hour, Matteo Piciollo crossed for Nicolas Chiesa whose volley was brilliantly saved by Cassar who flew to push the ball over the crossbar.

Cassar’s one-man show persisted as the Tarxien goalkeeper, effected two-point blank saves in quick succession. Villa run away with the ball but his near-post attempt was push away by Cassar. The loose ball landed at the feet of Fontanella who looked certain to score but his effort drew another last-ditch save from the Tarxien goalkeeper.

It was much the same pattern after the restart but Floriana toiled to recapture their early brio and Tarxien punished them on the hour mark. Claudio Frances ran at the Floriana defence before produced an inswinger that arched over the goalkeeper and into the net.

But the Floriana defence was soon caught off guard as Chiesa’s cross rolled to Fontanella whose soft flick over the goalkeeper had the better of Cassar at last.

The Greens didn’t t take long to equalise, Juninho Cabral’s freekick hit the post and Clyde Borg reacted quickly to slam home the rebound.

The avalanche of goals in an amazingly open game kept the fans on the edge of their seats. After 75 minutes, Luke Montebello made light of his giant frame with some fancy footwork on the left to cut inside and making room for a shot to beat Grech with a low drive.

The rhythm of the game dropped as the clock ticked down. With one minute left, Juninho broke clear on the right but his angled strike was beaten away by Cassar.