Month: November 2013

A Closer Look at…..Alessio Restuccia (Gzira United)

  • Name: Alessio Restuccia
  • Born on the 1st of March 1991 in Augusta (Italy). He is 22 years old.
  • Lives in Sliema.
  • Plays with Gzira United
  • He believes that you have to fight in life in order to achieve your personal goals.

How did you begin to play futsal?

Sincerely it was a natural choice that was going to happen one day or another. Being a bit restricted to form part of an 11 a side team because of work commitments, I opted for futsal and thanks to Gzira United, I have made this dream come true. 

Talk about your futsal career so far.

There is not much to say about my futsal career as I have started playing this sport only a few months ago. I cannot hide my feelings of missing 11 a side football as I have played for years with various teams. Despite all this, the reality is that I’m playing futsal and I want to focus strongly to obtain the maximum both individually and as a team.

Your unforgettable moment in this sport.

The moment that I remember most so far in futsal is the victory that we obtained against Valletta a few weeks ago. This game has taught me that even in futsal I can have my personal satisfaction. More than that, I like to talk collectively rather than individually. I believe in the unity of this team. I hope that I would have more memorable moments in the future.

Your best goal in futsal so far.

I think that my best goal so far in futsal was against Luqa St Andrews in the Knock Out Competition. The result was 2-2 and I managed to score the winning goal six seconds from the end. It marked the highlight of my futsal career so far and we obtained the qualification for the second round.

What is the level of futsal in Italy?

As I already said, I have never played futsal in Italy but I enjoyed watching the matches of my native town, Augusta on TV. I can say that the level is very high and this league is enhanced with lots of Brazilian players.

And what about the level in Malta?

I think that the futsal in Malta is still developing and is growing as time passes by. The FMA is doing its best to promote more this sport and enhance it further more. 

It seems that Gzira United are going to be one of the teams that will challenge for promotion this year…

Well, actually, it’s clear that we will try to challenge for promotion this year after the matches played so far. We will do this with serenity, without any pressure. We are facing every opponent with a certain positivity as if each match is a final. This is the spirit that is being transmitted by our coach and the club that is always there for us and helps us a lot even during our training sessions.

Describe Alessio Restuccia in three adjectives.

Ambitious, stubborn and trustworthy.

What about your future?

Honestly I’m not thinking about the future. I normally like to live day by day. I always try to do my best in every training session to fully fit for every match. Actually no one knows what the future will hold.


Rampant Paolites gain more ground

Hibernians maintained their perfect start in the FXDD Premier Division after defeating Pembroke 8-2. Three braces by Xavier Saliba, Levan Kobaidze, Rui Almeida and a goal by David Bobokhidze and Melvin Borg completed the mission for Hibernians.

The Paolites opened a three goal margin in the first fifteen minutes with three well taken shots but the game in the first half was still a cagey affair. Pembroke were awarded 3 ten meter mark penalties but they did not manage to convert even one of them.   Hibs now move on 18 points in the standings  having six points advantage over Luxol, Balzan and Pembroke although playing two matches more.

In another match, Zabbar registered their second win of the season after an 11-3 win against Melita. Even though the score shows great disparity between these two teams, it was Melita who had the upper hand in the first eight minutes. A goal scored by Melita in the first minutes was disallowed and then quick goals in succession gave Zabbar a margin which Melita could not overcome as they had a lot of injuries and players unavailable working abroad.

Two matches are scheduled for today at the Corradino Sports Complex:

20.00 – San Gwann vs Luqa

21.30 – Luxol vs Mosta

FXDD Knock Out: 2nd Round Draws

Tonight during the FMA’s council meeting, in front of the clubs’delegates, the FXDD Knock Out Second Round’s fixtures were drawn.

Mon 06.01.14
19:45 Melita vs Vittoriosa
21:15 Zurrieq vs Zebbug

Tue 07.01.14
19:45 Hibernians vs Zabbar
21:15 Msida vs Gzira

Thu 09.01.14
19:45 Swieqi vs Naxxar
21:15 Qormi vs Balzan

Fri 10.01.14
20:00 Pembroke vs Mqabba
21:30 San Gwann vs Fgura

Gzira back to winning ways

Gzira and Kalkara gained precious wins in the FXDD First Division after seeing off Sta Lucia and Valletta with convincing scorelines.

Gzira returned on winning ways after routing Sta Lucia 8-0. Three braces by Alessio Restuccia, Charlo Debattista and Leo Brincat and a goal each by Aurelio Burgio and Douglas Mifsud completed Gzira’s sixth victory of the season. They bounce back in the first place of the standings with 18 points having one match more than second place Qrendi who play against Siggiewi next Saturday.

In another match played at the Corradino Sports Complex, Kalkara beat Valletta 5-0. Vaughan Barnes scored a hat-trick, while Claudio Camilleri and Karl Muscat netting a goal each. This was Kalkara’s second victory of the season.


Alessio Restuccia scoring one of Gzira’s goals

Balzan kept on scoring

In the single match scheduled for today, Balzan dominated Swieqi United with the highest score so far of 17-1.

Balzan immediately went on the offensive and in a couple of minutes gained a series of corner kicks.

The first half ended 10-1 in favor of Balzan.

In the beginning of the second half, Swieqi created good chances of goal but weren’t able to finish them.

Balzan continued from where they left in the first half and scored 7 more goals.

For Balzan Glenn Bonello scored twice. Gabriel Dobre, Carlos Scicluna, Giancarlo Sammut and Nicola Delre scored a goal each. Marc Areny Albert and Emil Andrei Raducu scored 3 times each and Jovica Milijic scored 4 times.  To add to this long list of scorers, Martin Sammut scored an own goal.

While the only goal for Swieqi United came from Simon Gingell Littlejohn.

Therefore Balzan had the fourth consecutive victory and joined Luxol and Pembroke in the second place with 12 points.

On Thursday we’ll have 2 more matches from the Premier Division:

Melita vs Zabbar (7:45 p.m.)

Hibernians vs Pembroke (9:15 p.m.)

Another goal spree by Luxol, Qrendi bounce first

Luxol continued their glorious moment in the FXDD Premier Division when they produced a mammoth 14-1 victory  against Qormi.

The victorious side scored their goals from a hat-trick by William Barbosa and a brace by Carl Saliba.  Florin Anton, Noel Bray, Ibrahim Tarik, Basil, Paul Bugeja and an own goal completed the Luxol show.

In another exciting match, Vittoriosa beat Zurrieq 6-5 to register their first success of the season. It was a very close match with the Cottonera side who emerged the final winners.

In the FXDD First Division League, Qrendi bounced in the first place of the standings after beating Msida 6-2. The former are the only side without a defeat in this league.

Mqabba and Naxxar Lions shared an entertaining 3-3 scoreline to gain a point each while Sirens earned their first win of the season after defeating Fgura 9-5.


Photo Collage of the History of Maltese Futsal

Local photographer Joe Borg has produced a wonderful photo collage depicting the history of Maltese Futsal. It consists of some photos that he has taken during these last two futsal seasons held at the Corradino Sports Complex.

When this website asked Joe Borg about this photo collage, he said that this game is becoming even more popular. The local media is taking a lot of initiative to make this sport develop further.

“I tried to join some pictures together to create a photo story. I love this game. I can say that futsal is one of my passions.”

“I have been taking photos of futsal for the last three years. I try to cover almost all the games and this gives me a lot of commitment and motivation.”


A Closer Look at… Paul Bugeja (Luxol)

Paul Bugeja.

Born on the 16th May 1980 (33 years)

Works as Quality Leader at a local company.

He believes that if you want to achieve something in life you need to make a lot of sacrifices and continue believing. If you don’t succeed you can still say that you did your best.


             How did you begin your futsal career?

I began playing futsal by chance. There was a team who had a friendly at the Corradino Sports Complex and a friend told me to join in. I had never played futsal before. That match turned to be a blessing in disguise as I enjoyed myself and wanted to play another time. I remember that my friend told me if I was interested to join in this team and I gladly accepted.


Talk about your futsal career so far.

I began playing official futsal at the age of 26. I spent half a season with this team and we were placed in the relegation zone. But after some efforts from all the team mates we succeeded to avoid relegation. I was overwhelmed by this achievement.

After that season, one of my friends called me and proposed me to play with Kerygma. 

It was a year full of success personally as we were promoted to the First Division. At the same time I was called by the National Coach to form part of the National Team.

This turned to be another good opportunity. I had also spells with various futsal teams such as Southenders, Paola Downtown, Mosta Eagles and Pentagon. During these years I had lots of satisfaction as well as disappointments. In certains cases some of the mentioned teams were dismantled and this really put me a bit down.

After the new rules set by the FMA last year, I had the opportunity to play with Floriana. We were a good team but there wasn’t a good organisation so after just one season the team broke down.

Now I am with Luxol and I can say that it is an extremely organized team with lots of interesting elements.

As I said, during the last five years I had the opportunity to play with Malta and participated in two Euro Cup and two World Cups Qualifiers as well as playing against strong national teams. I would like to take the opportunity to thanks coaches Striz and Hermans that taught me a lot and obviously I can’t leave out our actual leader Florin Anton.


The best moment in Futsal so far.

There are a lot of nice memories but I remember in particular my international debut with Malta against Cyprus. I was really excited before the match. It turned out to be a positive debut for me.


A Goal that you’ll never forget.

Actually I remember mostly two goals that I really cannot forget.  Both goals were scored with the national team. The first goal was scored away against Switzerland while the other one was the draw against a Serie B team.


This year Luxol seems to be the team that will contest the two futsal heavyweights Balzan and Hibs….

Well, the team is still new but I think that the more we play, the more we’re improving. We have a mix of Maltese and foreign players; there is a lot of competition in the team as well as a lot of experience. Florin Anton, our player-coach has instilled a lot of confidence in us therefore we believe more in ourselves. The President and committee work continuously to improve the team’s image.  Despite all this we have to keep our feet on the ground and work more because the season is long and everything can happen.


What are your main objectives with Luxol?

My main objective is to challenge for the League Championship.


You’re one of the coaches of the Malta Futsal School. What is the level of the kids in this sport?

First of all I would like to thank two persons that gave me the opportunity to begin coaching young kids in futsal: John Pisani and Jean Bert. They inspired me a lot in this mission and I’m enjoying teaching small kids this wonderful game. My satisfaction comes when I see them advance to a better level. I try to teach them to pass the ball continuously and to be present during the action at any time

My advice to these kids is to continue playing futsal and their level will certainly continue to improve.


The future of Paul Bugeja.

Well, I have just come from a cartilage operation, I’m slowly recovering from it and I’m really enjoying playing again with my club. Regarding my future, I believe that until my legs keep going I would like to continue playing futsal. Then after some time I think I’ll concentrate in the coaching career. Hopefully I would like to coach a local futsal club. 


First win for Luqa

Luqa managed to gain their first points of the season after beating Birzebbuga with a 7-2 scoreline. Three goals by Andrew Scerri, two goals by Michael Galea and one goal for Justin Muscat and Stephen Aquilina sealed the issue for Luqa. Noel Tabone and Aaron Dalli reduced the arrears for Birzebbuga who lost their third match of the season.

Meanwhile Melita obtained their third win of the campaign when they defeated Mosta 9-2. This was the third consecutive defeat for the latter team. Three autogoals by George Douglas Saliba, Darryl Schembri and Matthew Caruana together with a brace by Bojan Minic, Nikola Petrovic, Kaene Cassar Degabriele, Jerome Mamo and Michael Martin gave Melita the precious points in this match. Mosta scored through Matthew Borg and George Douglas Saliba.


Another two exciting matches from the Futsal’s Premier Division

Hibernians dominate the pitch when beating Zabbar St. Patrick’s 8-2.

The goals for Hibernians came by a hat trick from David Bobokhidze, brace for Levan Kobaidze and Daniel Brincat while the 5th goal during the match came from Rui Miguel Ribeiro De Almeida.

For Zabbar the two goals came from Filipov Brothers (Nikolay and Rosen).

In the second match Pembroke Athleta beat San Gwann 6-1.

Pembroke had a very good match thanks to Bryan Degaura, who not only scored a hat trick but helped a lot to keep the team’s rhythm high.

Karl Azzopardi besides scoring the 3rd goal he also moved a lot during the match.

During the second half, the inclusion of Dexter O’Brien was very important, as he was always there with his fast play and scored the 5th goal.

Pembroke’s Kenneth Ekezie sealed the victory with his goal at the end of the match.

The only goal for San Gwann came from Andy Mangion.