V. Vranes-6, A. Loof-6, S. Arab-6, M. Duric-7, P. Fenech-6.5, S. Bezzina-6.5, M. Johnson-7, U. Ljubomirac-6.5, S. Dimic-6 (76 S. Cipriott), Weverton-6 (89 M. Grima), A. Andrejic-7 (85 A.Effiong)
D. Cassar-5, R. Grech-4 (85 T. Agius), Wellington-4, Raphael-6, H. Kone-6.5, W. Domoraud-5, J. Walker-4 (84 M. Mifsud), A. Borg-5, S. Tounkara-5, R. Scicluna-5, T. Espindola-5.
Referee Alex Johnson.
Yellow cards Kone, Arab, Andrejic
BOV Player of the match Aleksa Andrejic (Balzan).
A sound display by Balzan helped them halt a fumbling sequence of nine games without a win. The victory over Sirens was a legitimate one given their edge in teamwork, continuity and power in their forward moving stunts.
The sharpness of Balzan’s front-running tandem Stefan Dimic and Aleksa Andrejic could not be matched by Sirens’ strikers who had a day off, never mind the elusive running of Uros Ljubomirac and the influence of Paul Fenech.
Giovanni Tedesco, the Sirens coach, appeared to have no inhibitions as he presented a four-pronged attacking formation with Samba Tounkara and Wellington flanking the big-frame of central striker Wilfred Domoraud in front of the slightly deeper-lying Hamed Kone who joined Sirens from Gżira last week.
Balzan were just as disposed to go for enterprise with Weverton Gomes supported by Dimic and Andrejic. The former Tarxien striker and Duric made their first appearance for Balzan.
On 17 minutes, Andrejic skied the ball following a fine move involving Weverton and Ljubomirac.
Balzan showed up again, this time Michael Johnson heading over the bar from a free-kick by Duric.
During a hot raid in the Balzan area, Tounkara swung in a dangerous cross-shot but Steven Bezzina cleared away.
There was a period of ‘patchy’ fare as neither side could work out an opening. A gap was then created from a solo run by Kone who shot just over.
Balzan were off to a productive start in the second half when Duric marked his debut with a goal. His conversion on the 47th minute was as spectacular as it was clinical. He pounced on a loose clearance by the Sirens defence with the ball searing into the top left-hand corner of the net.
Sirens reacted immediately. Ryan Scicluna, out on the left, delivered a perfect ball towards Raphael whose header swept past Vukasin Vranes but Fenech hooked the ball off line.
Sirens strode forward again and on more than one occasion, were denied by Johnson.
First, Tounkara was blocked by Johnson as Domoraud took the rebound but hit wide. The Balzan defender emerged the winner in what developed into a personal duel with the Sirens forward as few moments later, he blocked the striker’s shot with his chest.
On 84 minutes, Sirens wasted another opportunity when Wellington failed to connect to a Kone cross when well positioned in front of goal.