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Popov earns points for Bulgaria in Malta

Published: Friday 12 June 2015, 23.04CET
Malta 0-1 Bulgaria
Ivelin Popov scored the only goal as the visitors overcame a missed Ilian Micanski penalty to claim their first victory since Group H's opening night.
by Domenic Aquilina
from National Stadium, Ta' Qali

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Match statistics

MaltaBulgaria

Goals scored0
1
Possession (%)42
 
58
Total attempts9
 
12
on target3
 
4
off target4
 
6
blocked2
 
2
against woodwork0
1
Corners1
 
3
Offsides4
 
2
Yellow cards4
 
2
Red Cards0
 
0
Fouls committed17
 
21
Fouls suffered21
 
17

Standings

SSI Err
Published: Friday 12 June 2015, 23.04CET

Popov earns points for Bulgaria in Malta

Malta 0-1 Bulgaria
Ivelin Popov scored the only goal as the visitors overcame a missed Ilian Micanski penalty to claim their first victory since Group H's opening night.

Bulgaria gain first win since September with victory in Malta
Ivelin Popov scores only goal of game (56)
Ilian Micanski misses first-half penalty for Bulgaria 
Mid-table Bulgaria now on eight Group H points; Malta stay bottom
Next games: Italy v Malta, Bulgaria v Norway (3 September)

A second-half goal from Ivelin Popov gave Bulgaria a vital victory in UEFA EURO 2016 qualifying Group H, the success in Malta boosting chances of a place in next summer's final tournament.

The visitors had not won since a 2-1 triumph in Azerbaijan in their first European Qualifier, and it was the home team who began the brighter. Alfred Effiong worked a shooting chance with a fine solo run only to fire over before Bulgaria started to settle, home goalkeeper Justin Haber producing a fine save to keep out Popov's lobbed free-kick.

Malta threatened again just past the half-hour, as it took a good block from Bulgaria keeper Bozhidar Mitrev to repel Roderick Briffa's first-time attempt. Haber was then called upon to defuse a low Ilian Micanski drive, before Bulgaria passed up the best chance yet on the stroke of half-time.

When Malta's Ryan Camilleri impeded Vladimir Gadzhev in the box, Micanski sent the resulting penalty wide of Haber's right-hand upright. However, Ivaylo Petev's men did move in front 11 minutes after the restart, Popov finally beating Haber with a composed finish.

Home heads refused to drop, and Malta twice might have equalised in the closing ten minutes. First Effiong collected Camilleri's long pass only to try to find Rowen Muscat rather than shooting himself; Mitrev gathered. Clayton Failla then went close with a rising effort, before Mitrev was perfectly placed to deal with a free-kick from the same player.

Bulgaria nearly added a second in added time, Stanislav Manolev's stunning strike being rebuffed by the woodwork, but a valuable win was already secure for the fourth-placed side.

Last updated: 14/06/15 0.03CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuro/season=2016/matches/round=2000446/match=2013951/postmatch/report/index.html#bulgaria+malta

Lineups

Malta

Malta

Bulgaria

Bulgaria

1
HaberJustin Haber (GK)
1
MitrevBozhidar Mitrev (GK)
2
A. MuscatAlex Muscat
Substitution63
2
BandalovskiIvan Bandalovski
5
AgiusAndrei Agius
Yellow Card11
5
BodurovNikolay Bodurov
6
P. FenechPaul Fenech
Yellow Card59
6
MinevYordan Minev
7
FaillaClayton Failla
7
AlexandrovMihail Alexandrov
Yellow Card58
Substitution75
8
BriffaRoderick Briffa
Substitution76
10
PopovIvelin Popov
Goal56
Substitution81
9
MifsudMichael Mifsud (C)
Substitution84
11
ManolevStanislav Manolev
11
R. MuscatRowen Muscat
18
GadzhevVladimir Gadzhev
17
R. CamilleriRyan Camilleri
Yellow Card45+1
19
MitsanskiIlian Mitsanski
Penalty45+2
Substitution90
19
EffiongAlfred Effiong
21
DyakovSvetoslav Dyakov (C)
Yellow Card62
22
Z. MuscatZach Muscat
Yellow Card45+1
22
A. AleksandrovAleksandar Aleksandrov

Substitutes

23
ZammitGlen Zammit (GK)
13
IlievPlamen Iliev (GK)
12
BonelloHenry Bonello (GK)
12
MakendzhievBlagoy Makendzhiev (GK)
3
J. ZerafaJoseph Zerafa
3
ZanevPetar Zanev
4
BaldacchinoClifford Baldacchino
4
TerzievGeorgi Terziev
10
CohenAndrew Cohen
Substitution84
8
GalabinovAndrej Galabinov
13
SchembriAndré Schembri
Substitution76
9
VasilevRadoslav Vasilev
Substitution90
14
AbulezzFiras Abulezz
14
MalinovKristiyan Malinov
15
HerreraEdward Herrera
Substitution63
15
ChochevIvaylo Chochev
Substitution81
16
BrincatClive Brincat
16
StoychevBorislav Stoychev
18
KristensenBjorn Kristensen
17
MilanovGeorgi Milanov
Substitution75
20
S. PisaniStephen Pisani
20
TonevAlexandar Tonev
21
SciclunaRyan Scicluna
23
ZlatinskiHristo Zlatinski

Coach

Pietro Ghedin (MLT) Ivaylo Petev (BUL)

Referee

Aleksandar Stavrev (MKD)

Assistant referees

Marjan Kirovski (MKD), Dejan Kostadinov (MKD)

Fourth official

Goce Petreski (MKD)

Additional assistant referees

Dimitar Meckarovski (MKD), Dejan Jakimovksi (MKD)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution