Zuniga brace helps Magpies ease past Manchester

Two second-half goals from defender Francisco Zuniga helped Bruno’s Magpies beat Manchester 62 4-0 last night at the Victoria Stadium.

Photo (C) David Roberts

The match, which saw a crowd of about 30 or so people attend with fans allowed back for the first time, was a straight-forward affair for Magpies, who had benefitted from more rest than their opponents, who had won in the Rock Cup on Tuesday night against College 1975. Magpies saw Kelvin Morgan miss out after picking up his 5th yellow card in the last game, while for Manchester, Mikey Borge took place in goal over Ayden Vinales, who had saved two penalties in the cup shoot-out.

Zuniga had the earliest chance of the game, when he headed over from Alan Parker’s deflected free kick, before Javi Gallardo’s lobbed effort went over both Borge and the Manchester 62 crossbar. Johnny’s side did find the breakthrough not long after though, as Jayce Consigliero’s threaded pass set up Rubo to score his 14th of the season, eight of which have come in the Challenge Group. The striker should have doubled his tally, but headed straight at Borge soon after, before Magpies keeper Alan Martin had to make a smart stop, denying his team-mate Dan Bent from heading into his own goal.

Injuries to Jean-Carlos Garcia, and seemingly also to Jeremy Lopez, either side of half-time, would have concerned Magpies, while Manchester also lost Robert Montovio and Robert Guiling to injuries as well, with the pair now major doubts for next week’s Rock Cup semi-final against Glacis. The second half was a much slower contest as Magpies comfortably extended their lead and ensured no slip in concentration. Zuniga doubled their sides lead from close range after 55 minutes, before the 30-year-old Mexican made it 3-0 from a set piece. Another set-piece would prove to be Manchester’s final undoing, as after some unconvincing goalkeeping, Ruben Diaz appeared to get the final touch to wrap up the game at 4-0.


Bruno’s Magpies: Martin; Garcia (De Haro, 42), Gallardo (Cataruozzolo, 78), Diaz, Zuniga, Lopez (Livingstone, 50), Coombes, Bent, Consigliero, Parker, Rubo (Assumpcao, 78)

Unused Subs: J. Perez, Fernandez, Vinet

Manchester 62: Borge; Sardena (Sanchez, 62), Pereira (Mifsud, 70), Montovio (Farmer, 44), Negrette, Ballantine, Thomas (Asquez, 70), Guiling (Moir, 62), Edzes, Clenahan, Garcia

Unused Subs: McCarthy

Yellow Cards: Ballantine, Thomas

Red Cards: None


Saints and Europa to meet in Rock Cup quarter-finals

St Joseph’s and Europa will face off in the Rock Cup quarter-finals after securing wins against Bruno’s Magpies and Europa Point respectively yesterday.

Photo (C) Rough & Ready

Saints opened the cup this year with a tight 2-1 victory against Bruno’s Magpies in the early kick-off. Juanfri had put St Joseph’s 1-0 up just before half-time, before Javi Casares equalised for the Challenge Group leaders soon after half time. The tie looked like remaining at 1-1 until five minutes to go, when Andrew Hernandez pounced on a loose ball to grab the winner for Raul Procopio’s side.

Europa’s game was much more of a formality, as they comprehensively beat Europa Point 10-0 in the later kick-off. From the get go, the gulf in class between the two was clear to see, and fresh off making his international debut against Montenegro, Dylan Borge grabbed four of the 10 goals – Liam Walker and Adrian Gallardo scored two each, while Mikey Yome and Olmo scored the other goals as Rafael Escobar’s side comfortably set up the quarter final tie vs their title rivals.

Today’s fixtures see Glacis take on Intermediate League side Hound Dogs in the 6:30pm kick-off – the winner of that tie will face Mons Calpe, while in the later kick-off, Lincoln take on Lions, with the winner set to face Lynx in the last eight. The other quarter final, already set in stone, sees Manchester 62 take on College 1975 – all quarter-finals are scheduled for between the 13th – 14th April, with the semi-finals a week after, and the final on 21st May.


Five-star Glacis blow away Magpies in convincing win

Glacis United moved to within two points of Bruno’s Magpies at the top of the Challenge Group after an eye-catching 5-1 victory against the group leaders yesterday evening.

Photo (C) David Roberts

Magpies saw David Zamora return in goal in place of Alan Martin, while Kelvin Morgan was on the bench after returning from international duty. For Glacis, they were unchanged from the 4-1 victory vs Manchester 62, with Lython Marquez returning to the bench after a one-match ban.

Glacis would have the early chances, and went ahead after 10 minutes, as Craig Galliano made it goals in back-to-back matches with a deflected effort into the bottom corner. Miguel Londero missed a glorious chance on the half hour mark, but a few minutes later Glacis doubled their lead – Zamora got caught out from a corner and Job Derksen was on hand to head the ball into the back of the net.

Despite a Magpies triple-sub at half time, things went from bad to worse as Ruben Diaz, one of the trio bought on at the break, was sent off for denying a clear goalscoring opportunity when he fouled Darlington Nwosu. Moments later, Magpies were made to pay further as Jamie Bosio headed in from a well-worked corner to get his first senior goal since his return to the league.

With 15 minutes left, Glacis would get a fourth – Marquez, who came on for Galliano, saw his shot saved, but the rebound was slotted in by Nwosu for his fifth goal in three games since signing for the club. Rubo would pull a goal back for his side to ensure he scored for six matches on the spin, but Glacis restored their four-goal lead five minutes from time as Wessel Witbreuk drilled a shot into the bottom corner to wrap up a comprehensive victory for his side.

Glacis now move to within two points of Magpies with five games to go in the group, while for Bruno’s, they’ll need to pick themselves up quickly before a tough Rock Cup tie next week vs St Joseph’s.


Bruno’s Magpies: Zamora; Garcia, Gallardo, Zuniga, Assumpcao (Diaz, 45), Jones (Livingstone, 71), Coombes, De Haro, Casares (Cataruozzolo, 45), Parker (Lopez, 45), Rubo

Unused Subs: Martin, Morgan, Soussi

Glacis: Zappacosta; Smith, Thorne-Llambias, Castle (Lopez, 77), Derksen, Bosio, Witbreuk, Galliano (Marquez, 71), Ajayi, Nwosu (Borghi, 77), Londero

Unused Subs: Fluxa, Andrulli, Currer

Yellow Cards: Casares, Cataruozzolo

Red Cards: Diaz


Rubo brace helps Magpies brush aside Europa Point

Two goals from Rubo, as well as strikes from Jean-Carlos Garcia and Javi Gallardo saw Bruno’s Magpies beat Europa Point 4-0 last night.

Photo (C) Black and Burst

Europa Point saw Josef Webber, Kyron McGrail and James Chiles-Cowell come into the side after the 4-1 defeat to Manchester 62, while Magpies handed starts to Alan Martin, Ruben Diaz, Jeremy Lopez, Lee Coombes, Evan De Haro and Alan Parker, with Kelvin Morgan absent due to being on international duty with Gibraltar.

After Rubo and Coombes both had efforts that didn’t go in, Magpies eventually took the lead after 24 minutes, when right-back Jean-Carlos Garcia volleyed in a cross from left-back Javi Gallardo. Daniel Tudela, who captained Europa Point, was clearly the busier of the two keepers, and he kept the score at one saving efforts from Lopez, Rubo and Francisco Zuniga, before Rubo finally made it 2-0 on the stroke of half time with a great finish past the keeper.

Rubo got his second, and Magpies third on the hour mark, before Javi Gallardo wrapped up the three points with a drilled effort 20 minutes from time. The win sees Magpies strengthen their grip on the top of the Challenge Group, while Europa Point’s struggles continue and they remain bottom.


Europa Point: Tudela; Wilson, Webber, McGrail, Martin, Martinez, Juel-Saleh, El Yettefti (Torrilla, 67), Webber, Chiles-Cowell (Parral, 54), McCarthy

Unused Subs: Victor, Podesta, Castle

Bruno’s Magpies: Martin; Garcia (Marquez, 76), Gallardo (Livingstone, 76), Diaz (Bent, 60), Gil, Lopez, Coombes, De Haro, Casares (Jones, 60), Parker (Vinet, 68), Rubo

Unused Subs: Zamora, Cataruozzolo

Yellow Cards: None

Red Cards: None


Javi Casares nets double in Magpies win

Javi Casares’ double helped Magpies remain top of the Challenge Group with a hard-fought 4-1 victory over Manchester 62.

Magpies got off to the perfect start when captain Rubo put his side ahead after only four minutes. The strike partnership of Rubo and Morgan continued to cause the Manchester defence problems but several excellent saves by Ayden Vinales kept the score at 1-0.

Keiron Garcia equalised for Manchester 62 just after the half-hour mark when the Gibraltar U21 international smashed the ball in from close to make it 1-1.

Despite Man62 having two penalty appeals early in the second half, it would be Magpies retaking the lead through Javi Casares tapping in a rebound after Shay Jones’ strike hit the crossbar. 10 minutes later and Keiron Garcia saw red for a tackle on Kelvin Morgan – a poor decision from the referee which left Manchester playing with ten men.

Rubo stepped up and took the resulting penalty which was saved by Ayden Vinales. Casares got his second of the night in the 71st minute before second-half substitute Alan Parker made it 4-1 with six minutes remaining.


Manchester 62 – Vinales; Sardena (McElwee 78), De Los Santos (Montovio 78), Negrette, Ballantine, Sanchez (Clenahan 67), Casciaro, McCarthy, Edzes, De Torres (Pereira 61), Garcia

Unused subs: Borge, Moir, Thomas

Brunos Magpies – J.Perez; Garcia, Gallardo, Zuniga (Diaz 46), Jones, Morgan, Fernandez, Bent, Consigliero (B.Perez 46), Casares (De Haro 83), Rubo (Parker 74)

Unused subs: Martin, Livingstone, Marquez

Yellow cards: Vinales, Sardena, McCarthy, Edzes, Garcia; Zuniga, Jones, Consigliero

Red cards: Garcia


Kelvin Morgan hat-trick inspires Magpies

Kelvin Morgan scored a second-half hat-trick to send Magpies on their way to a 4-0 victory against Europa Point yesterday.

The 23-year old netted all three goals inside 14 minutes, his partner Rubo popped up with a goal also, as Magpies found some positivity in a below-par season.

Magpies were frustrated for large parts of the first half with Europa Point defending solidly and keeper Daniel Tudela pulling off several important saves.

It took Morgan 5 minutes to grab his first goal after coming on for Alan Parker. The ball fell to the striker after getting onto a low cross by Jaron Vinet and firing low past Tudela.

Rubo would double his sides lead just three minutes later when the striker headed in from Javi Gallardo’s cross. Vinet would set up Morgan again for his second on the 74th minute before completing his hat-trick two minutes later.

Magpies finish seventh, one point behind Lions and will face Glacis, Manchester 62, Europa Point and College 1975.


Morgan on target in Magpies win

Rubo, Javi Casares and Kelvin Morgan were all on target for Magpies in a comfortable 3-0 win over College 1975.

Johnny Parrado was hoping for a response from his players after their 4-1 defeat to Mons Calpe earlier in the week and his wishes were answered when Rubo put Magpies ahead after 15 minutes.

Javi Casares doubled Magpies lead from the penalty spot in the 27th minute and put the game beyond reach for College. No further goals in the first half but College were dealt a blow when Stefan Thorne and Jemar Matto were forced off with injuries.

Magpies controlled the game from start to finish and made it 3-0 after 85 minutes when Kelvin Morgan original penalty was poorly taken and saved but the referee ordered for it to be retaken.

Morgan stepped up again with a bit more power behind his shot and hit the post but the 23-year old reacted quickest to tap in the rebound.

Questions will now be raised about this Magpies squad and coaching team on how such a promising season has ended so disappointingly.


College 1975 – Oliva; Mendez (Ruiz Lopez 6), Perez, Matto (Parkinson 45), Victory, Franco, Gracia, Marin (Pacheco 64), Thorne (Hughes 45), Gallardo, Molina

Unused subs: Warwick, Rodriguez, Wahnon

Magpies – Zamora; Garcia, Zuniga, Jones, Fernandez, Vinet, Coombes, De Haro (Morgan 58), Bent, Casares (Consigliero 65), Rubo (Parker 74)

Unused subs: Perez, Gallardo, Cataruozzolo, Perez

Yellow cards: Oliva, Franco, Gallardo, Hughes; Bent, Casares, Rubo, Morgan

Red cards: None


Mons return to winning ways to boost top-six hopes

Mons Calpe returned to winning ways in emphatic fashion, boosting their top-six hopes with a 4-1 victory against Brunos Magpies last night.

Cesar Vegas’ side came into the game on the back of a draw against Lions last December, but there was no sign of rust as Diego Diaz put Mons ahead after seven minutes.

Magpies were dealt a heavy blow at half-time when Tyson Ruiz was given a second yellow after the whistle, leaving his team with ten men and trailing 1-0.

Three minutes into his debut and debutant Elyakim Musoni set up Diaz to make it 2-0 for Mons Calpe then seven minutes later, Ayoub El Hmidi would make it 3-0.

Rubo instantly pulled a goal back for Magpies but the game was put to bed in the 85th minute when Musoni scored from outside the box to make it 4-1.


Mons Calpe: Fraiz; Dos Santos, E.Santos, Bernardes, El Hmidi (N.Santos 88). N.El Andaloussi (Rodriguez 66), Ojeda, Ballester, Diaz, Ronco, Mallemaci (Musoni 66)

Unused subs: Montano, Moreno, Caballero, M. El Andaloussi

Brunos Magpies: Perez; Garcia, Diaz, Zuniga (Morgan 69), Cataruozzolo (Parker 46), Assumpcao (Gallardo 35 – Fernandez 80), Vinet, Lopez (Jones 70), Casares, Ruiz, Rubo

Unused subs: Zamora, Coombes

Yellow cards: Dos Santos, Bernardes, El Hmidi, Diaz, Ronco, Mallemaci; Diaz, Cataruozzolo, Casares, Ruiz

Red cards: Ruiz


Lopez: “This league is very unpredictable, that’s why we remain focused on winning our three games”

FG caught up with Bruno’s Magpies and Gibraltar’s Jeremy Lopez to talk about the season so far, his time at his new club, and more.

Photo (C) Black and Burst

Magpies sit eighth in the league, but only one point off the top six with three games remaining, so how does Lopez view his sides season thus far? “It hasn’t been the finest of starts in terms of results, however the results are not an accurate reflection of our performances. Narrowly dropping points against Europa Fc on the opening game of the season as well as five dispelling minutes of concentration led to the defeat against Lincoln Fc on the subsequent fixture.

We have demonstrated that we can contest with any of the top teams but we have also exposed that we need to be as formidable against all the other teams, respectively. ‘On a good day we can beat anyone but then again on a bad day we can lose to anyone’.”

Lopez signed for Bruno’s Magpies in the summer, joining from Europa Point – how has the 31-year-old settled at his new team? “To be completely honest, I did not know what to expect when I signed for Bruno’s, I had very limited knowledge on the club as whole. From day one I was instantly received by the club, their philosophy of competitiveness, humbleness, togetherness and consanguinity corresponding well to my personality.

Following UEFA’s acceptance, this team has been the best in terms of players, tech team, board members and owners flourishing collectively as a family. After every game, irrespective of the result, the club invites the whole team for dinner and drinks. This is a clear indication of team cohesion.”

The Magpies team has built itself on a number of experienced players, adding to this in January with the recent signing of Javi Casares, a 36-year-old winger with experience at clubs such as Granada, Alaves and Oviedo – does Lopez feel the team can call on said experience in the battle for top six before the split? “We have plenty of experienced players on the squad, the likes of Javi Gallardo (ex Balona), Ruben Diaz (Cadiz), Alan Martin (Leeds), JC Garcia and Tyson Ruiz just to name a few. We also have very talented young players which contribute equally to the success of the team, the likes of Jaron Vinet, Shay Jones & Craig Galliano.

We still have three game pending with one point from Lions who are currently sitting in 6th position. Our remaining matches are Mons Calpe, Europa Point and College. On paper some of the other leading teams have harder fixtures to play in comparison to us, but this league is very unpredictable, that’s why we remain focused on winning our three games.”

Finally, we asked Lopez what his goals were as a footballer in 2021: “I feel I’ve been playing well in recent games, nevertheless I feel I can improve further. My goals for 2021 is to qualify for Europe with Bruno’s and to hopefully receive a call from Julio Ribas to be able to represent my great country in the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers.”

Lopez also added: “Finally, I would like to say a big thank you to the GHA and all the key workers for their efforts against COVID-19. Thank you to everyone for following the regulations set by Govt. Together we will overcome this.”


Saints on top at Christmas

St Joseph’s will go into the Christmas break sitting top of the table after beating Bruno Magpies 3-0 last night.

Johnny welcomed back Francisco Zuniga after his injury and Shay Jones was handed his first start for Magpies while Procopio made two changes with John Paul Hernandez making his debut and Federico Villar walked straight into the heart of the Saints defence.

Magpies got off to a quick start and looked the better team for most of the first half but were unable to test John Paul Hernandez, who was making his Saints debut.

Domingo Ferrer Lopez, Erin Barnett and Boro all picked up yellow cards in the first half to give you the feeling that the game will be a fiery contest. Saints took the lead just before half-time through a stunning free-kick by Mariano ‘Nano’ Gonzalez Maroto.

An unfortunate own goal by Zuniga would give Saints a 2-0 lead before Juanfri would put the game to bed just a minute later when Nano dispossessed Ruben Diaz and squared the ball for the Spaniard to score his 13th goal this season.

It would take 65 minutes for Magpies to have their first real chance of the game when Rubo’s header was straight at Hernandez, apart from that, it was a poor half for Magpies in general.

Saints would hold on to the lead and walk away with the three points needed to sit top of the table, albeit on goal difference while Magpies sit eighth.


Magpies – Martin; Garcia, Diaz, Zuniga, Cataruozzolo (Fernandez 37), Jones, Vinet (Morgan 64), Lopez, Bent (Assumpcao 68), Parker, Rubo

Unused subs: Zamora, Catania, Consigliero, Soussi

St Joseph’s – Hernandez; Garro (Hernandez 68), Boro (Loren 64), Nano, Barnett (Serra 68), Pecci (Guirado 78), Juanfri, Villar, Pons, Ferrer (Juanma 46), Mouelhi

Unused subs: Chipolina, Carrasco

Yellow cards: Lopez, Bent, Morgan; Boro, Barnett, Pecci, Ferrer

Red cards: None