Another four teams will be in action on Sunday as Tarxien Rainbows and Valletta take on newly-promoted sides Marsaxlokk and Vittoriosa Stars respectively.
After obtaining their best placing in the club’s history – a fifth place, Tarxien will be aiming at moving a step further this season. The team was strengthened considerably with the signing of no less than four Brazilian players – Sergio Pacheco de Oliveira, Ricardo Mion Varella Costa, Cristiano dos Santos Rodrigues and Daniel Mariano Bueno who returns with the Rainbows after just one year in Poland. These join defender Everton Antonio Pereira.
Other new signings include veteran defender/midfielder Orosco Anonam, Julian Vella and Sergio Hili. Justin Grioli is now a Tarxien player after playing on loan from Valletta last season.
Stacey Vella, David Camilleri, Andrew Decesare and Kurt Magro moved elsewhere. Denni Rocha dos Santos joined Valletta while Anderson Mendes Ribeiro left Malta.
On the other hand, after securing a quick return to the top division, Marsaxlokk will be aiming at retaining their Premier League status. Since last season, Florent Raimy left the club, Roderick Bajada returned to Sliema and William Camenzuli joined Mosta on loan but they secured the services of Nigerian striker Alfred Effiong, Portuguese midfielder Ruben Guerriero and Argentine forward Julio Alcorse. Alcorse returns with the club after playing for Sliema for the final part of the season. Bulgarian duo Emil Yantchev and Rumen Galabov were confirmed.
Another new addition is Sunday Eboh who joined the club from Floriana. Carlo Mamo and Reuben Gauci are back with the club after playing for Birkirkara and St. Andrews on loan respectively.
Meanwhile in the second game, Valletta will be aiming for a good start as they face Vittoriosa Stars.
With Jesmond Zerafa as the new coach, the BOV Super Cup winners signed Jonathan Caruana, Ian Azzopardi and three new foreigners, namely Denni Rocha Dos Santos, Omonigho Temile and Joseph Okonkwo. Azzopardi is set to make his debut as the other four players have already made their first appearance in the Euro Cup, Europa League matches or the Super Cup. Edmond Agius and Kenneth Scicluna are ruled out through injuries.
After securing promotion to the Premier League, Vittoriosa worked hard to strengthen their squad for this new adventure. They replaced foreigners Henry Makinwa and Leontin Chitescu with three Brazilian players – Jorge Silva dos Santos, Carlos Emanuel Campagnoli, Edison dos Santos Tarabai – and Nigerian striker Anthony Ewurum.
Other new signings include Stephen Wellman from Qormi, Jean Matthias Vella and Ryan Sell from San Gwann, Sharlon Pace and Carl Sammut from Pietà, Kevin Mifsud from Msida, Dino Cachia who played for Dingli last season and goalkeeper Simon Agius. Mauro Brincat, Jonathan Xerri and Clayton Micallef will be playing for another season with the club.
The Stars’ main objective will be that of avoiding relegation.