Cover photo inset: Joe Borg
Malta’s Under-21 team left the field victorious on Friday after a 2 -1 home win against Hungary. This is the team’s first win in the Euro U-21 Qualification Group 6, and is set to raise the team’s – as well as fans’ – morale going forward.
“This win means a lot to us, Hungary is a big team that plays with larger teams… but we are happy with our first win, the players did some great work, the congratulations go to them. We always work in the same way, we see our game, we see the opponent’s game, and see how we can improve, and I think we were able to correct some of the smaller errors we had in the game,” said the team’s coach Silvio Vella following the win.
Photo: Joe Borg
Malta’s goals electrified the crowd and garnered the team a lot of praise
Matthew Guillaumier started off the scoring with a header at 12 minutes after some strong defending from the Maltese side that was able to stop Hungary’s attacks.
Julian Degabriele was able to assault the Hungarian defence, shaking them up, which opened the floor to repeat attacks. Guillaumier came close to scoring a second goal at the 40th minute when he shot a powerful low ball straight towards the goal, only to be stopped by the Hungarian Balazs Bese.
Hungary’s Szalai came close to scoring at the end of the first half, only to be repelled by Jean Borg.
Hunagary re-entered the second half strongly, and the repeat attacks paid off in the 48th minute when Szalai was able to head the ball in behind Malta’s defence.
However, the Maltese team remained determined, and after a series of corners for Malta, the home team seemed to be putting the pressure back onto their opponents.
It all eventually paid off in the 90th minute of the game, as Beerman built up on the attacking momentum to score a last minute goal, causing the Maltese fans to erupt into cheers.