TARXIEN RAINBOWS 0; MOSTA 1
The relegation limbo which Mosta faced lately is now mathematically over. Their latest victory over Tarxien Rainbow after four consecutive defeats, although a slender one, has brought them their salvation without the need to play the play-off this year.
A goal netted by Godwin Mensah midway through the second half earned Mosta full spoils and the eight points advantage they have over rivals Naxxar albeit the latter have a game in hand, means that this year, it will be their rival’s turn to play the premier league play-off against Senglea Athletics.
Tarxien Rainbows Jacques Scerri gave the fringe player a run-out as Bruno de Oliveira, Luke Montebello, Alex Alves and Joao Pedro were rested ahead of their FA quarter-final against Balzan.
Although shorn of seven players, Tarxien tried to breach Mosta’s thick phalanx in midfield who, were depleted by the absence of 'casualties' Dyson Falzon and Adrian Borg who were presumably advised not to risk injury.
Yet, the Rainbows’ enterprise could not be translated into anything tangible in the opening period expect for speculative play around the penalty’s area. Shy the half hour mark, Alex Nilsson hit a shot wide from a clear position.
Almost on the stroke of half-time, it was Zackary Brincat’s turn for Mosta to hit a rising shot over the target.
The pace slowed down even more after the change of ends with most of the exchanges being restricted to the midfield area.
In the 53rd minute, Rodrigues Ekani took a cross from the right but James Brincat lost a great chance when he miscued his shot from three metres out.
James Brincat’s continuity, though, was not to be disregarded and his nippy 71st minute run and eventually shot was stopped by Andrea Cassar.
Mosta were piling up the pressure at this point and it was no surprise that they broke the deadlock. The improving Mensah went surging forward on a corner to stab the ball past Cassar.
Mosta’s edge in possession became more pronounced but their lead was too slender for any sort of comfort.
Indeed, a streaking run by Claudio Frances could have produced something but for Ekani who halted the striker in the box. So could Ayrton Azzopardi from free-kick which had the Mosta wall blocking his effort.