The U*BET FA Trophy takes centre stage this weekend as eight teams fight for a place in the semi-finals of the competition. The eight teams who made it through the first two rounds, namely Floriana, Hibernians, Tarxien Rainbows and Vittoriosa Stars join the four teams who were awarded a bye – holders Valletta, finalists Qormi, champions Birkirkara and Sliema Wanderers.
On Saturday, Sliema Wanderers take on Birkirkara at 14:00 while holders Valletta face Hibernians, kick-off at 16:00
Sliema and Birkirkara were both awarded a bye after finishing third and Champions respectively in the BOV Premier League last season. The Wanderers were disappointed to play in the Relegation Pool after finishing eighth but have already secured their Premier League status. Birkirkara, on the other hand, are currently second in the Championship Pool, nine points behind leaders Valletta.
The two teams met three times this season. In the Euro Cup, Sliema beat Birkirkara 3-1. In the Premier League, Birkirkara beat Sliema 4-1 while the second round clash ended in a 2-2 draw.
Holders Valletta enter the quarter-final stage directly after being awarded a bye. Hibernians, on the other hand, beat Pietà Hotspurs 4-0 and St. Andrews 3-2 to reach this stage.
The Citizens are heading towards the twentieth title in the history of the club while the Paolites made up for a most disappointing first phase by securing their Premiership status with three wins in the Relegation Pool.
The first round clash between Valletta and Hibernians ended in a 2-2 draw. Valletta won 2-0 in the second round.
In these matches, extra-time will be played if necessary and if the result is still draw at the end of extra-time, penalty kicks shall be taken in accordance with the Laws of the Game.
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