Malta Football Association
Diary of Events - MAY 2016
Jun 13, 2016
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Referees Events

MAY  2016



  • 02 May 2016  Referees’ Committee Meeting chaired by Alex Manfrè, Malta FA Vice-President.


  • 02 May 2016  During the Malta Football Players’ Association MPFA Awards 2016,  FIFA Referee Alan Mario Sant was voted as the best referee for season 2015-2016.


  • 03 May 2016  A meeting for Gozitan Match Officials and Referee Observers was held in the sister island of Gozo, which included a training session at the Gozo Stadium, a technical meeting at the Gozo FA Headquarters, and a farewell dinner in an G─žajnsielem restaurant in honour of Reno Refalo who retired as an active referee.  Following the successful attendance rate by the Gozitan colleagues, the Referees' Committee is keen on maintaining the organisation of such meetings in Gozo during next season.


  • 05 to 21 May 2106  FIFA Assistant Referee Edward Spiteri was appointed for the European Under-17 Championship 2016 taking place in Baku, Azerbaijan.  He was includedin a group consisting of 8 referees, 12 assistant referees and 4 fourth officials from 23 different European countries.  Following four appointments during the Final Stage Group matches Italyvs Serbia (2-1), Azerbaijan vs Belgium (1-1), Bosnia and Herzegovina vs Ukraine (2-1) and Denmark vs England (1-3), Edward Spiteri was appointed for the Quarter-Final match Sweden vs Netherlands (0-1); he was with referee Ville Nevalainen (Finland), assistant referee Emmett Dynan (Republic of Ireland) and 4th Official Bartosz Frankowski (Poland).  UEFA officials Nikolay Levnikov (Russia) and Rudolf Zavrl (Slovenia) were Referee Observer and Match Delegate, respectively.


  • 12 May 2016  FIFA referee Esther Azzopardi  was invited by producer and presenter Clare Agius on her television evening programme Ilsien In-Nisa on ONE TV; other guests were Catherine Micallef (UEFA Venue Operations Broadcast Manager), body builder Melissa Frendo, and rugby player Maria Spiteri.The discussion addressed the participation of women in 'male dominated' sports disciplines and roles, life in this ‘work’ aspect, the challenges they face; as well as the satisfaction received not only on a personal level but also when representing their national associations, and Malta. 


·        14 May 2016  A half-day seminar for all promotion nominees was organised by the Malta FA Refereeing Department as part of a restructuring process that will witness an expansion of match officials in all different categories.  The vast majority of the 44 candidates are aged between 18 and 32, thus in line with UEFA's policy of providing new opportunities to young match officials. This, together with the valid experience of older candidates, will surely help in ensuring a wider range of options for the Refereeing Department as from next season.The seminar included sessions related to topics such as offside, the handling of major situations, team work and cooperation, fitness testing,as well as a mock test related to the Laws of the Game.  The seminar was coordinated by Acting Director of Refereeing Kevin Azzopardi, and Refereeing Officer Philip Agius. All examinations were held later on in the end of May/beginning of June.


  • 14 May 2016  14 May 2016  After a career of 26 years (the last 15 as an Elite Category referee, international referee 2008-2015), Marco Borg took charge of his and the season’s last match – the Malta FA Trophy Final betwen Balzan and Sliema Wanderers, at the Ta’ Qali National Stadium.  For this last match, Marco Borg’s team consisted of Duncan Sultana and Luke Portelli as Assistant Referees, Alan Mario Sant and Trustin Farrugia Cann as Additional Assistant Referees, Sandro Spiteri  as 4th Official, and Peter Abela was Reserve Assistant Referee.


  • 20 May 2016  During the MFA Awards 2016 at the Mediterranean Conference Centre in Valletta, the Refereeing Department presented the Referees’ Award to Marco Borg, Adrian Azzopardi, Andrè Arciola andReno Refalo in recognition for their long career which ended this last season.  The Refereeing Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Tom A. Restall for his service both as an active refereeand also on the administartive side of refereeing, during a career spanning nearly sixty years (1957-2016).These awards were presented by the Referees’ Committee Chairman and Malta FA Vice-President Alex Manfrèin the presence of Acting Director of Refereeing Kevin Azzopardi.


  • 23 to 29 May 2016  FIFA Beach Soccer Referee Jude Amin Utulu officiated at the fourth edition of the European clubs’ competition, the Euro Winners Cup 2016,in the Sicilian resort of Catania (Italy), with the list of participating teams in the competition including some old acquaintances, as well as clubs making their debut in this top-class competition. There were 48 teams competing: 32 Men’s and this year also 16 Women’s as Beach Soccer Worldwide introduced a Women’s Division – an innovation which already showcases the growth of the competition itself.  Jude Amin Utulu was involved in 20 matches: 7 as Referee 1 (including a QF, and the 3rd Place), 3 as Referee 2 (including a 2nd Semi-Final), 5 as Referee 3 (including a QF, and a Play-off 5th Place), and 5 as Timekeeper (including a 1st Semi-Final, and a Play-off 7th Place).


  • 27 May 2016  A total of 20 participants, including 5 female – who regularly attended the Malta FA’s Referees’ Academy Program’s theoretical and practical sessions while also undergoing written and fitness examinations on Saturday mornings between October and April  – successfully completed the course.  During the Graduation Ceremony, Malta FA Vice-President and Chairman of the Referees’ Committee Alex Manfrè congratulated all participants and emphasized the importance of integrity at all times.  Acting Director of Refereeing Kevin Azzopardi heaped praise on all graduates and highlighted their high sense of dedication and commitment; and stated his certainty that this was the first step of a bright career ahead.  Project Leader Paul Caruana said that in his first year at the helm of the Referees’ Academy, he was truly satisfied with the achievement of these young referees; he hoped that the record number of participants this year would continue to increase in the coming seasons.  The graduates – Massimo Axisa, Matthea Borg, Tesmarie Busuttil, Michaela Camilleri, Preston Carbonaro, Daniel Casha, Michael Pio Cilia, Robert Curtis, Mark Deguara, Kieran Duncan, Kelsey Farrugia, Kelly Galea, James Gauci, Luke Meli, Andrea Pavia, Andre Portelli, Rycart Spina, Melchior Tabone, Luke Xuereb and Gerard Zammit Young – as from next season will be enrolled as Grassroots Referees and appointed in Youth FA matches.


·        27 to 29 May 2016  For the second year running, Maltese officials were invited to participate in the Lennart Johansson Academy Trophy played in Skytteholms IP, Solna (Sweden).Elite Development Referees Emanuel Grech and Ismael Barbara, National Referee Alex Johnson, and National Assistant Referee Christopher Azzopardi,joined other talented UEFA and FIFA referees from Europe, and the tournament’s refereeing director Markus Lejonstad from Sweden. Together with other referees’ exchange agreements established in recent years by the Malta FA Referees’ Department, this is another in the chain of opportunities which are proving to be a fruitful experience for our young and upcoming match officials’ future careers.


·        29 May 2016 Maltese FIFA officials took charge of the ‘A’ friendly international match between the national teams of Italy and Scotland at the National Stadium, Ta’ Qali.  Referee Alan Mario Sant’s team consisted of Alan Camilleri and William Debattista as assistant referees, Esther Azzopardi and Fyodor Zammit as additional assistant referees, while Roberto Vella was 4th official. 

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