Malta Football Association
Rivals face off in Sunday’s BOV Premier League encounters
Nov 17, 2017
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BOV Premier League

The BOV Premier League returns this weekend after the international break with a host of enticing matches between clubs that have lofty ambitions this season.

Ħamrun Spartans renew their rivalry with Valletta, a clash that revives fond memories of the eighties when thousands of fans used to flock to the National Stadium to watch matches between these two clubs.


Having conceded only four goals in 10 matches, Valletta lie top of the BOV Premier League table with 23 points, two ahead of Gżira United and Balzan. Ħamrun Spartans are seventh on 15 points.


The Spartans, 2-0 winners over Naxxar Lions in their last league outing, welcome back Guilhermo de Castro and Tiago Souza.


Valletta will be missing Malta wing-back Joseph Zerafa who was sent off for two bookings in the goalless stalemate against Hibernians.


Sunday’s #RivalEncounters also feature the Old Firm duel between Floriana and Sliema Wanderers, a repeat of last season’s FA Trophy final, won 2-0 by the Greens.


Sharing fourth spot on 20 points, the two rivals will be going all out to stretch their positive run and keep the pace at the top.


This week, Sliema Wanderers strengthened their forward line with the signing of Moldovan Nicolae Milinceanu who joined the Blues on loan from Swiss club FC Chiasso.


Coach John Buttering can’s bank on Nigerian winger Frank Temple who was handed a two-match ban after the 2-0 victory over St Andrews.


Floriana coach Giovanni Tedesco will once again have to watch the Greens from the stands as he completes a two-match touchline ban.


On the positve side, Floriana welcome back midfielder Maurizio Vella who missed the game against Senglea Athletic.




On Saturday, champions Hibernians and Birkirkara will be looking to get back to winning form after both failed to gain maximum points from their last outings.


Hibs, now down to sixth place on 18 points, figured in a goalless draw against Valletta while Birkirkara threw away a one-goal lead in a 2-1 defeat to Balzan.


Five defeats and a draw in their opening 10 matches make for a disappointing start for Birkirkara and the gloom will deepen around Paul Zammit’s team should Hibernians inflict a sixth defeat.


Midfielder Matthew Guillaumier is out for the Stripes after suffering a leg injury in the Balzan defeat.




Gżira United meet Naxxxar Lions in the weekend’s opening match at the Centenary Stadium on Friday.


Darren Abdilla, the Gżira United coach, is buoyed by the return from suspension of Senegalese striker Amadou Samb.




Steve D’Amato’s tenure as Senglea Athletic coach ended after their 3-0 defeat against Floriana.


Senglea’s match against Mosta will be the first for their new Italian coach, Paolo Favaretto. Argentine winger Ivan Edgardo Paz is still suspended for the Yellow-Reds.

Mosta, on the other hand, can bank on Davide Mansi who missed the 2-2 draw against Gżira United due to suspension.


St Andrews take on Lija Athletic who come into the mach on a high after their 3-2 win over Tarxien Rainbows.


Albanian forward Erjon Beu is suspended for Lija.


On the other hand, Matthew Gauci, Emmy Pena Beltre and Kyle Butler return from suspension for St Andrews.


The in-form Balzan start as favourites to take maximum points hen they meet strugglers Tarxien Rainbows who have Sean Cipriott suspended.

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