Valletta will be hoping to beat Tarxien Rainbows for the first time this season as the two teams cross swords at the Hibernians Stadium on Saturday in a clash from the Championship Pool. In fact, in the first two rounds, Valletta and Tarxien shared the spoils in two 2-2 draws.
The Citizens are currently second, three points behind leaders Birkirkara and therefore a win is a must in order to regain the joint-leadership. They won five of their last six league matches, dropping the only points in the draw with Tarxien.
After securing a place in the Championship Pool, Tarxien will hope to continue giving all top teams a hard time in this season which is turning out to be a historical one for the club after avoiding relegation for the first time last season. The Rainbows have gone five matches without defeat in league matches, besides securing a place in the National League 100 Anniversary Cup semi-finals and the U*BET FA Trophy quarter-finals.
The Rainbows are expected to be in full strength. Valletta, on the other hand, should welcome back Gilbert Agius and Terence Scerri after both missed the last game against Dingli. However Njongo Priso is still ruled out through suspension.
Meanwhile in a match from the Relegation Pool, Msida St. Joseph take on Dingli Swallows. Msida and Dingli lie in the bottom two places, starting the second phase on six points and two points respectively.
The Saints will be hoping to claim the three points from this game in order to close in on Hamrun Spartans in their bid to avoid relegation. Msida lost seven of the last eight matches, claiming the three points in a 2-1 win over Dingli. In the first round, they had defeated the Swallows with the same score.
Dingli are coming from a series of fourteen successive defeats and now aim to start their second phase commitments with a positive result.
Msida will be unable to field their best formation due to the absence of goalkeeper Manuel Bartolo and Serbian defender Zoran Levnaic who are both serving a one-match ban.
Photo: Copyright © www.stephengatt.com