Malta Football Association
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U*BET FA Trophy Semi-finals - GRANDSTAND FINISH AS HEAVYWEIGHTS ARE KEPT APART
May 14, 2012
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General
Cups & Competitions

This season’s U*BET FA Trophy trek could well be heading towards a grandstand finish after the season’s two heavyweights of local football, Valletta and Hibernians, were kept apart in the semi-final draw held soon after the Lilywhites played the second-placed Paolites in the last match of the BOV Premier League on Saturday. The City team and Hibernians will face Qormi and Hamrun Spartans who both ended up in the relegation pool of this season’s Premier League.


 


 

 

Barring any unforeseen twist, the top-placed league teams look likely to win their matches on May 20 and 21 respectively and contest the final scheduled for 27 May at the National Stadium. Valletta will be after their 26th final and the Peacocks their 19th, having won the prestigious prize 12 and 8 times in turn. For the Spartans it could be the 11th appearance, while Qormi are seeking their second chance after having been narrowly beaten by Valletta in the 2010 final.

 

In the quarter-final matches Jesmond Zerafa’s team had ousted Mosta 3-1, Hibernians edged out previous holders Floriana 1-0, with Hamrun Spartans removing St George’s 3-1 and Qormi needing extra-time to eliminate Pieta Hotspurs by a solitary goal.

 

The new-style format of the competition, whereby all teams in the Malta and Gozo national leagues had the opportunity to stake a claim for the ultimate silver prize, came in for special mention by the MFA Chief Executive Officer Bjorn Vassallo, who said that this season’s Trophy campaign was a success. Apart from the possibility of surprise results when unfancied teams meet bigger guns, as seen from two Division One teams reaching the last eight, the image of a more democratised knock-out competition makes for extended interest among supporters and thus bigger attendances.   

 

We all look forward to two keen semi-finals, with the tag of underdogs for Hamrun Spartans and Qormi, two teams representing big localities, being possibly thrown overboard as they take on the favourites. 

 

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