McKay shoots Saints to healthier placing
St Andrews remained in eighth place in the standings yesterday despite a narrow 1-0 win against relegation-haunted fellows Gzira United.
But the three points served them in good stead as they now have 13 points and are certainly in a healthier position. On the other hand, Gzira remain on nine points.
St Andrews were definitely the better team in the first half and they deserved their slender 1-0 lead.
The Saints were more determined than their opponents and created the best of the very few chances during a rather boring opening 45 minutes.
Actions in front of goal were few and far between and Gzira were restricted to just two efforts, one of which went well over the post.
The Maroons were lacking in ideas and they never really troubled goalie Galea except on one occasion, soon after the start.
It was only in the final ten minutes of the second half, that they pressed hard in search of an equaliser, but it never materialised as they found a resolute Saints’ defence facing them.
Gzira had a good chance to take the lead on the 8th minute when off a Ledesma cross, it was Machedo Neto who tested goalie Jake Galea with a good header, but the Saints goalie dived sideways to save.
In the 19th minute, from another Ledesma freekick, first Diamoutene and then Machedo Neto failed to make contact in front of goalie Jake Galea.
St Andrews took the lead in their first real foray in the 21st minute. From a cross by Zika Kastrevec, it was Godwin McKay who flicked the ball past Jurgen Borg.
St Andrews remained in control of midfield and in the 37th minute, it was Dale Camilleri who tested Borg, but the Gzira goalie saved on deck.
Early in the second half, Jurgen Borg was called upon to save a dangerous 20-metre drive from Godwin McKay.
The Saints almost added a second goal on the hour when a Farrugia fine freekick just missed the far post with goalie Borg beaten.
On the 68th minute, Gzira goalie Borg rushed out of his charge and dived at the feet of Nwoko to avoid an awkward situation.
In the 77th minute, Gzira threatened through a Moises Avila Perez header, but goalie Galea was well positioned to save.
Soon after, at the other end, newcomer Nenad Belacevic fired a hard shot from 20 metres, but Borg saved well.
In added time, as Gzira went all out in search of an equaliser, Jacob Borg headed over the bar following a Ledesma cross.
And just before the final whistle, Gzira were awarded a freekick outside the area, but Ledesma’s effort went just wide.