C. Avram; I. Revenco, I. Jardan, V. Mudrac, S. Platica, C. Sandu, M. Cojocaru (83 A. Bejan), I. Turcan (90 A. Fedorov), V. Bogaciuc, M. Iosipoi (90 M. Potirniche), V. Ambros (74 C. Cotogoi).
G. Kitanov; C. Rutjens, O. El Hasni, E. Callegari, A. Garzia (80 A. Caseres), J. Arias (86 C. Zammit Lonardelli), M. Garcia (68 M. Veselji), L. Trillo (68 A. Magri Overend), J. Busuttil, K. Reid, J. Scicluna (46 A. Ciolacu).
Referee Artyom Kuchin (Kazakhstan FA).
Yellow cards Bogaciuc, Rutjens, Platica, Callegari.
A first half goal from Iaser Turcan sunk Floriana in Moldova as the Maltese representatives bow out from European football.
In last week’s first leg of the first qualifying round of the Europa Conference League, Floriana dominated Petrocub but could capitalise on their chances as the tie ended in a goalless stalemate.
In Moldova, the Greens needed to score in order to have a chance of progressing but despite their 11 total attempts created, it was Petrocub who found the all important goal for a historic European qualification in their club’s short history.
For this game, coach Atzori made a couple of changes in the starting formation with Lorenzo Trillo starting his first Floriana game and James Scicluna replacing Andrei Ciolacu upfront.
Meanwhile, Floriana’s opponents Petrocub will line up in a 3-5-2 shape like last week. Coach Ivan Tabanov has made just one tweak to his side from last week’s first leg.
Constantin Sandu starts as left-wing back instead of Artem Fedorov. In addition, Maxim Cojoacu and Marius Iosipoi have swapped their roles for this evening’s game as they start as midfielder and forward respectively.
Officiating the Petrocub vs Floriana tie will be Arytom Kuchin from the Kazakhstan FA.
Constantin Sandu produced a couple of early shots for Petrocub but Floriana goalkeeper Georgi Kitanov was alert to avert the danger on both occasions.
The hosts, trying to capitalise on their strong start, had a Marius Iosipoi effort which was also halted by Floriana’s goalkeeper.
On the other hand, Floriana’s first chance came through a Oualid El Hasni’s header but which was not dangerous enough to threaten the Moldovan representatives.
Petrocub made their pressure count on minute 26. A clever pass by Iosipol who switched the play on the oncoming wingback Sandu whose curling effort was partially saved by Kitanov before poacher Iaser Turcan beat his marker Lorenzo Trillo to the ball which he guided into the net.
Floriana’s reply dropped on the feet of youngster James Scicluna but his strike sailed wide over the bar as their attacking options were limited by Petrocub’s organised defensive phase.
At half-time, Romanian striker Andrei Ciolacu came on the field for Maltese youngster Scicluna.
Floriana were looking to stage a reaction in search of a leveller but even substitutes Adam Magri Overend and Mattia Veselji could not spark the Greens into life.
Late in the game, Atzori played another offensive card in introducing Augusto Caseres on the field but they could not find a way to break down the hosts as Floriana’s journey in Europe comes to an end after just one round.
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