The Malta U-18’s national team succumbed to a 7-1 defeat at the hands of the Republic of Ireland in their second and final friendly against the same opponents at the Tony Bezzina Stadium, on Thursday.
These friendlies are serving Alessandro Zinnari’s led-team as a preparation ahead of the U-19’s European Championships that will be held in Malta in the summer of 2023.
Last Tuesday, both Malta and Ireland crossed swords for the first time with the Reds managing to hold the Irish side to a goalless stalemate.
This time around, though, the Irish managed to break down Malta’s resilience and went on to seal a comfortable victory.
Ireland opened the score after 10 minutes through Mark O’Mahoney before Michael Leddy doubled the score. Malta pulled one back through a Jake Micallef’s penalty on the 27th minute.
Nonetheless, Ireland remained in control of the game and O’Mahoney scored his nation’s third past the half-hour mark.
At the restart, Ireland added four more goals through O’Mahoney – who scored a hat-trick, Jad Hakiki, Tom Lonergan and Alex Murphy.
MALTA: Adam Buttigieg, Ivin Farrugia, Miguel Azzopardi, Jake Micallef, Matteo Gambin (Mattias Ellul 67), Luca Gatt (Jake Grech 67), Lucas Caruana (Andrew Borg 54), Brooklyn Borg, Shaisen Attard (Jamie Scerri 54), Sebastian Azzopardi (Zack Barbara 46), Nathan Cross (Andrew Apap-Bologna 83).
Coach: Alessandro Zinnari.
IRELAND: Noah Jauny (Conor Walsh 26), David Toure (Sam Curtis 67), Ben Curtis, Alex Murphy, Cathal Heffernan, Oisin Gallagher (Jamie Mullins 52), James McManus (Justin Ferizaj 67), Jad Hakiki, John Ryan, Michael Leddy (Dara McGuinness 67), Mark O’Mahoney (Tom Lonergan 52).
Coach: Colin O’Brien.
Referee: Ezekiel Barbara (Malta).