Malta Football Association
Jake Grech heartened by team’s display in Swiss defeat
Mar 25, 2018
Posted in:
U/21 Qualifiers

Malta Under-21 may have lost their warm-up against Switzerland Under-20 at the Centenary Stadium on Friday but the team’s attacking display has given captain Jake Grech cause for optimism ahead of their UEFA Under-21 Championship qualifier against Turkey in Alanya on Tuesday (kick-off 3pm).

“Despite the defeat to Switzerland U-20 (1-3), a lot of positives have come out of that game,” Grech told


“People might point at the result which is understandable, but the fact that we created chances to score, apart from hitting the post, is very encouraging for us.”


The Malta Under-21 squad, led by head coach Silvio Vella, arrived in Alanya on Saturday evening ahead of their tough match against Turkey.


On Sunday morning, the players had an indoor session, led by physical trainer Karl Attard under the guidance of coach Vella and his assistant Noel Turner. The squad are due to train again this evening.


Grech spoke positively about the dressing-room atmosphere and the relationship between players and technical staff.


“We are grateful to our technical staff, they are there for us all the time, especially Silvio Vella who is a very good coach,” Grech said.


“He has taught me a lot tactically and mentally, he has helped me to develop as a player and to enhance my game.”


The Malta U-21 are still looking for their first points in a strong group containing the likes of Belgium, Sweden, Hungary, Turkey and Cyprus.


“At this level, there are no easy games for us,” Grech said.


“And to make it more difficult, we have very strong teams in the group, Sweden, Belgium, Hungary and Turkey.

“Tuesday’s match is our last away qualifier in the group. I’m optimistic that if we can get something from this game, we can build on that ahead of our home games against Belgium, Cyprus, Sweden and Hungary in the coming months.

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