Month: March 2014

A Closer Look at…Shaun Attard (Sta Lucia)

Name: Shaun Attard

Born on the 25th August 1994 (19 years old)

Lives in Qormi.

Work as a waiter in a leading hotel in Malta

His personal motto is…NEVER GIVE UP

How long have you been playing futsal?

I have been playing this beautiful sport for the last twelve months.

How did you begin?

I was always fascinated by this game. I remember that Sta Lucia needed another player to complete the squad. I was interested to have a try and join this club. I didn’t regret this decision.

Your opinion about the game.

Well, I think that futsal is a fast game. You need lots of tactics and techniques to succeed. Most of all you need to be physically and mentally there to follow the tempo of the game.

Any successes so far?

Well I’m still new in this game so my personal success for now is that I’m playing futsal. But never say never, I’m still young and I’m determined to achieve success in the future ahead.

How are you feeling with Santa Lucia?

I am very happy with Santa Lucia. We play as a team and try to work for each other because we believe in the collective effort.

Are you satisfied with your season so far?

I am very satisfied with what we’ve achieved so far. We’re always trying to improve game after game.

Your personal dream.

I would like to play in the Premier Division and eventually play for the national team.

Vittoriosa made history and Balzan again in the final

It wasn’t an easy game for both of the finalists.

Vittoriosa managed by Francesco Ronsisvalle played hard and managed to obtain a stunning victory against a well-organized Zabbar.

Zabbar missed Radoslav Kovachev and Nikolay Filipov which were both suspended.

On behalf of Vittoriosa, Darren Lynch and the goalkeeper Gabriel Mansueto were injured.

It was a very tight game but pleasant for all futsal lovers.

Zabbar had a three goals lead from Glenn Barry, Omar Toutoungi and Rosen Filipov.

Later in the first half Vittoriosa came back aggressively and brought the score equal, by Leandros Calleja, Kurt Azzopardi and in the last minute Kenneth Spiteri put the ball at the back of the net from the penalty spot.

The second half came out to be a very interesting one with both teams fighting for each and every second to obtain possession and win the match.

Gilbert Scerri, Milan Jovanovic and Glenn Barry found the net for Zabbar.

Vittoriosa made it to the final with a brace from Darton Bugeja, another two goals from Leandros Calleja whose second goal came from a penalty and Kenneth Spiteri sealed the victory with his second personal goal.

The referees for this game were Adrian Caruana and Jude Amin Utulu, the Time keeper was Kristof Szakacs and the Third Official was David Balzan.

In the other semifinal, Balzan made it to the final with a sour taste against Pembroke.

Pembroke was in full squad while Balzan had missing Jovica Milijic who was sick and the goalkeeper Reuben Grech who was still injured.

After only a minute Gabriel Dobre put Balzan in the lead and doubled the score few minutes later.

Pembroke’s reaction was evident and managed to end the first half with only one goal difference by Karl Azzopardi’s goal.

During the half time most probably Balzan’s player and coach, Gabriel Dobre gave his players a harsh talk and envisaged them to be more concentrated during the rest of the game.

In the second half Balzan lacked a lot and they hardly managed to score.

Finally, Emil Andrei Raducu made them three goals for Balzan.

The referees for this game were Stephen Vella and David Balzan, the Time keeper was Robert Attard and the Third Official was Adrian Caruana.

Now Balzan will face off Vittoriosa in the final on Friday 2nd May 2014.

Gzira make it two in a row

Gzira clinched their second victory in two days after seeing off neighbours Msida 7-1. It was a collective performance by the Maroons who scored their goals from Alessio Restuccia (3), Josh Parry (2), Charlo Debattista and Joseph Mifsud.

Etienne Ellul scored the consolation goal for Msida.

This success puts Gzira level on points with Valletta although playing a game more. They install themselves in the second place two points further than leaders Qrendi.

A goal in the dying seconds of the match by Noel Tabone gave Marsascala a dramatic 4-3 victory against Siggiewi.

It was a balanced match between two teams that had the intention to impress and seek precious points to go further up in the table.

Marsaskala gained a double advantage but Siggiewi made a great comeback and scored three goals to forge ahead.

But the Southsiders had other plans and they restored parity until scoring that precious goal 20 seconds from the end.

Noel Tabone inspired his side by netting a hat-trick while John Paul Barbara added another one for Marsaskala who now climb seventh in the table.

Qrendi lose again, Valletta take advantage

Qrendi suffered a shock defeat in the FXDD First Division after being surprised by ninth-placed Sirens 5-4.

It was the second consecutive defeat for the leaders who now have to look behind their nearest promotion hunters Valletta, Zebbug and Gzira with only five points separating the first four teams in the table.

George Chircop and Darren Aitchinson twice together with a goal from James Tabone,  gave the all-important goals for the St Paul’s Bay side who climb ninth in the table.

Alan Spiteri (2 goals), Antonello Brincat and Kevin Vella put their  name on the scoresheet for Qrendi.

Valletta chalked their ninth consecutive victory in the league after having the better of Naxxar Lions 3-1 to go second in the standings only two points far from leaders Qrendi.

Naxxar started well and opened the deadlock through Khail Drago. Valletta tried to level the matters but the Naxxar rearguard defended well to preserve their advantage before the break.

The second half was a different story as Valletta took control of the match and scored three times through a brace from Dylan Agius and Dassier Borg to maintain their perfect record in 2014.

Gzira maintained their promotion hopes alive after narrowly beating a mighty Mqabba side 5-4. Christopher Formosa put Mqabba ahead and Wayne Mizzi doubled the score until Chris Bezzina reduced the arrears for Gzira.

Andre Ciancio made it 3-1 for Mqabba after a superb run.

This goal proved to be an injection for the Gzira side as they quickly reacted and restored parity from Jurgen Mifsud and Alessio Restuccia to end the first half 3-3.

In the second half, the match was a balanced affair until Chris Bezzina put Gzira ahead with Wayne Mizzi levelling the score to 4-4 for Mqabba.

Noel Bilocca scored the all-important goal for the Maroons leaving Mqabba stunned after quite a good performance.

Fgura had the better of Kalkara 5-4 to climb sixth and leapfrog the same opponents in the table.

Semi-Finals are here!

Vittoriosa Stars take on Zabbar St Patrick in the FXDD Futsal Knock-out Semi-Finals having already disposed of Valletta, Melita and Zurrieq.

Vittoriosa have reached the last four of the competition by using only home grown players and now stand on the brink of another landmark in the club’s history. A win next Friday would see them in their first Knock-Out Final but first they have to get past Zabbar St Patrick.

Zabbar St. Patrick made a great hit when eliminated Hibernians before they met Gzira in the quarter final. Zabbar made it to the semifinal after beating Gzira on penalties 5-4 in a very sensational game.

The other semi-final is between one of the top clubs in Malta’s Futsal, Balzan who will play against Pembroke Athleta.

For Pembroke, this is a particular game, since most of the players used to play with some of the Balzan’s players before Balzan Futsal took over Bidnija Futsal Team.

Pembroke are aware that next Thursday will be playing against one of the best futsal teams in Malta, with very good Maltese National players and International foreign players.

However, Pembroke’s coach is keeping the team concentrated and focused on the game. The coach’s directives are to play a collective game. The players are training hard and a concentrating because it is going to be a difficult but not impossible game. It all depends how much they’re going to play as a collective team.

Balzan will make everything to keep the cup in their premises. On their road to they started against Sirens. It was not an easy task but they managed to beat Sirens 5-3. Afterwards, against a well-organized Qormi they won with the score of 6-1. Finally in the Quarter Final they eliminated Swieqi United for 10-0.
For sure it will be a tight match as Pembroke possesses a very good young squad and are fighting for a top four playoff spot. Balzan’s positive mentality can reach the finals and could be a good test before the playoffs later on in the season. Balzan’s coach Gabriel Dobre has almost full squad for his disposition except goalkeeper Reuben Grech who is on the side-lines for few weeks more.

 

B’Bugia and Pembroke end first round in a positive way

Birzebbugia and Pembroke both won their respective matches to end their first round commitments in a positive way.

Pembroke defeated Mosta 7-1 to preserve their fourth placing in the table.

Brian Deguara hit a brace while Floren Manea, Dexter O’Brien, Carl Azzopardi, Daniel Mizzi and Matthew Micallef scored a goal each.

Birzebbugia obtained their second consecutive victory after having the better of  Zurrieq 9-8.

Jovil Abela struck a hat-trick, Joan Antoni Tarros Barrafon and James Galea hit a brace while Javier Abad Juni and Andrea Cutajar scored a goal each for the Southsiders who climb twelfth in the table to reach Zurrieq with 10 points.

Zebbug win and go second

Zebbug clinched their tenth positive result of the season when they defeated Msida 4-3. It was a hard-fought win for the Yellow/Greens even though Msida had shown sheer determination during this match.

For Msida this was their eighth defeat of the season and are still ninth in the table.

In an exciting match, Marsascala made a great comeback after seeing off Mqabba 6-3. The latter were leading 3-0 but a goal before half-time brought new hopes for the Marsascala side.

In the second half, the comeback was accomplished after Marsascala scored five goals without reply to register their seventh victory of the season and climb eighth in the table.

In the battle of the basement, Siggiewi managed to grab a convincing 3-0 win against Sta Lucia to leapfrog the same opponents.

James Borg, Glenn Gauci and Benji Briffa scored the all-important goals for Siggiewi.

 

San Gwann and Hibernians move forward

Before yesterday’s match both San Gwann and Hamrun Spartans had 8 victories and 5 defeats.

Both teams worked hard, they had many chances of goals missed and it showed up to be a tough game.

For San Gwann, Dylan Musu found the net for three times and and two additional goals came from Shaun Vella and Andy Mangion.

For Hamrun Spartans Christian Cacciatolo, Antonio Marin Guardia, Aboussala Mohammed Elamari and Martin Svihalek reduced the score to 5-4.

During the last 7 minutes Hamrun had to play twice with 4 men when Martin Svihalek received the second yellow card and a straight red for the goalkeeper Dillon Spiteri for touching the ball with his hand outside the penalty area.

San Gwann are now momentarily at the 4th place together with Pembroke with 27 points.

Hibernians came back on top of the table in a hard encounter against Swieqi United.

Hibernians opened the score early in the first half by David Bobokidze’s goal and that was the only score in the first half.

Swieqi’s goalkeeper Peter Curmi and his team mates had a good game and made it hard for Hibernians to score.

Eventually Hibernians took control of the game and Xavier Saliba with a sigh of relief made them 2-0.

A brace from Melvin Borg sealed the victory for Hibernians with the end result of 4-0.

Clint Cope returns and scores a brace

After a long injury Clint Cope returned back on the pitch and helped Balzan grab the three points at stake after a 5-3 win against Zabbar.

He scored a brace for his team and contributed with several assists for his team mates.
Other goals for Balzan were scored by Boycho Marev (2 goals) and Andrea Dan.

Zabbar, who played a good game, replied with goals from Rosen Filipov, Glenn Barry and Radoslav Kovachev.

This win enabled Balzan to join Hibs in the second position of the table although playing a game more than the Paolites.

In the second match, Qormi had the better of Luqa 5-2. It was an exciting match with Luqa starting brightly in the first minutes and finding the net through Chris Cardona. They continued to press the Qormi rearguard who found keeper Stefan Vella in fine form when he performed some good saves.

A few minutes before half-time, Peter Pullicino restored parity. This goal galvanized the Yellow/Blacks who performed a series of counterattacks with Luqa keeper Clint Mifsud being busy during the match.

Alan Galea found the advantage goal after a rebound to make it 2-1 for his side.

In the second half, Mark Mizzi scored a brace in less than a minute to extend Qormi’s advantage.

Chris Cardona found the net again for Luqa until Michael Galea sealed the issue for the winners.

 

 

 

A Closer Look at…Allen Medati (Qormi FC)

Name: Allen Medati

Born on the 23rd April 1984 (29 years old)

Lives in Msida.

Plays with Qormi FC as a Front Winger.

Works as an Accounts Clerk.

Personal Motto: Hard work pays off

How did you begin to play futsal ?

Everything began in the year 2009. I was approached by David Smith who used to play futsal with Los Street Boys. He asked me for a trial with his team. I didn’t take so much time to decide as I knew some of the players and therefore I joined Los Street Boys.

Talk about your futsal career so far.

Well I believe that with Los Street Boys I achieved more than I had bargained for. In my first season with this team we succeeded to avoid relegation and in the second season we were promoted as second division champions. I placed in the top 3 scorers of the league and we were finalists in the Knock Out. It was a great start for my career.

One year later I joined Luxol Amazon Cinco and passed two important years there. I learnt a lot with Luxol especially some tactics of the game.

My next step was Qormi FC, a club that wants to improve in all aspects of the game.

Let’s talk about futsal. What are the advantages and disadvantages of this sport?

As a sport, futsal has the advantage of never giving up. A 5-0 scoreline doesn’t give you total certainty as we have already seen in these last matches.

Another cap in the feather is that you can develop more individual skills that may help you even in 11 a side football.

A disadvantage may be that you have to be 100% fit for the game and it’s easier to get injured in this sport.

What do you think about Qormi’s championship till now?

I think that we had a positive championship till now. We succeeded in our objective to place among the top 8 of the league. We had a perfect start until we had some injuries and other problems that in a way made us lose some important points. Despite all this, I believe that if we maintain this unity in the team we can obtain good results and eventually win some precious points. 

Your personal objectives in futsal…

I would like to win a championship title and then participate in the Futsal Champions League. I would even like to  coach a futsal team later on in my career.

Describe yourself in three adjectives.

Positive, Bad Loser and likes joking.