Malta Football Association
NEWS:
Fancied teams target FA Trophy semi-final berths
Feb 9, 2015
Posted in:
General
Cups & Competitions

 

With the second round of the BOV Premier League completed last weekend attention of local football followers now turns to the FA Trophy which is now sponsored by Attian Group Services Ltd.

 

The competition which now attracts almost all Maltese and Gozitan teams, has reached its quarter-final stage with seven teams representing the top drawer of the National League complemented by Sirens the only surviving side from the lower tiers of the league competitions.


 

The more fancied teams, holders Valletta, 13 times winners, Premier League leaders, Hibernians, who won the Trophy 10 times, and third and fourth-placed Birkirkara (4) and Balzan are rightly fancying their chances of reaching the last four. Only that the Paolites and Balzan have to face each other for a semi-final berth.

 

Mosta have been paired with the City team, while Pieta, in the lower rungs of the top division, will come up against the Yellow-Reds of Birkirkara. Qormi, twice beaten finalists in the last three years, play Sirens, currently in the 11th place of the second division.

 

Notable absentees are Sliema Wanderers and Floriana, the former having won the Trophy 20 times and the Greens who have figured as winners of the competition on 19 occasions.

 

Although these former eminent teams of the Maltese game have had to bow out of the competition, the allure of the FA Trophy can never be dimmed. Its revamping in recent years has served to spread the interest among more clubs including several in the lower divisions who have managed to make it to the later stages since the prestigious knock-out became open to all clubs in Malta and Gozo.  

 

While the big three, Valletta, Hibernians and Birkirkara are expected to proceed further, at least on current form, as do Qormi thanks to their benign draw, knock-out competitions have a knack of springing surprises. This means that the big guns can never take anything for granted.

 

Supporters of the eight teams will therefore look forward to honest sporting battles involving their favourites, with handsome crowds expected to watch the proceedings.

 

The programme opens on Friday 13 February with the Valletta – Mosta match at the National Stadium scheduled for 6.00pm to be followed by the clash between Balzan and Hibernians at 8.00pm.

 

On Saturday Qormi cross swords with Sirens at 2.00pm, with Birkirkara meeting Pieta at 4.00pm, both matches to be played at the Hibernians Stadium.

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