Ħamrun Spartans face a challenging path in their Champions League journey after a 1-0 loss to Lincoln Red Imps in the first leg of the first qualifying round at the Centenary Stadium.

Lincoln Red Imps gained the upper hand thanks to a superb goal from winger Britto. The match was intense, with both teams ending the game with ten players each. The Spartans were dealt a significant blow early on when Brazilian midfielder Elionay Freitas received a straight red card just nine minutes into the game, forcing the team to play most of the first half with a numerical disadvantage.

The situation evened out in the 44th minute when Kike of Lincoln Red Imps received a second yellow card for a foul on Joseph Mbong, resulting in his expulsion.

In spite of these challenges, Ħamrun Spartans showed resilience, particularly in the second half, mounting several attacks and pressing their opponents hard, much to the delight of their passionate fans. While Lincoln Red Imps hold the advantage, the tie is far from decided with another 90 minutes left to play, leaving room for a potential comeback by the Spartans.