Old Firm rivals Floriana and Sliema Wanderers will be all out to end the season on a positive note as the two teams cross swords in the FA Trophy final at the National Stadium on Saturday, kick-off 17:00. Apart from lifting the prestigious FA Trophy, also at stake is a place in the UEFA Europa League this summer along with runners-up Balzan and fourth-placed Valletta.
Floriana and Sliema are the two most successful clubs in the competition. The Greens won the competition 19 times and were losing finalists on another twelve occasions. The Wanderers, on the other hand, won the FA Trophy 21 times and were losing finalists twenty times.
Sliema won the first edition of the FA Trophy in 1935 thanks to a 4-0 win over Floriana and won last year’s edition of the FA Trophy after defeating Balzan on penalties. Now that the ‘old’ FA Trophy is being replaced by a new trophy, designed by world-renowned trophy maker and silversmiths Thomas Lyte, the Blues will be eager to be the first team to lift the new trophy as well.
Floriana and Sliema met fourteen times in FA Trophy finals. Sliema won six times – in 1935, 1936, 1956, 1965, 1974 and 1979 while Floriana emerged as winners in 1938, 1945, 1949, 1953, 1955, 1958, 1972 and 1993.
This season, Floriana finished their commitments in fifth place on 54 points, two ahead of the Blues. However Sliema defeated Floriana three times this year – 3-1, 3-1 and 3-0.
Despite winning the FA Trophy last season, Sliema were unable to take in European competitions due to the lack of a UEFA licence and therefore should they win the FA Trophy, they would make a comeback after taking part for the last time in 2014. On the other hand, the last time Floriana took part in the UEFA Europa League was in 2012.
The Malta Football Association would like to announce the following traffic and crowd management arrangements for the FA Trophy final.
For the FA Trophy final between Floriana FC and Sliema Wanderers, being played on Saturday, the gates will open at 15:15. The stand allocations are as follows:
Floriana FC – West A
Sliema Wanderers – West C
Nurseries – Millennium D
Neutral fans and Family Stand – Millennium F
The police will set up a buffer zone along the National Stadium ring road, from the Training Grounds area to the Millennium Stand roundabout (next to the MFCC entrance).
Floriana supporters will be allocated the West Side car park (enclosure) and the adjacent road leading to Durumblat. The Floriana fans are to reach the National Stadium from the Mosta area (Durumblat).
Sliema Wanderers supporters are to park their vehicles along the road in front of the Millennium Stand. They are to approach the stadium from the area where there is the Military Cemetery, coming from Żebbuġ or Attard.
Floriana supporters making their way to the Stadium on double decker buses have allocated parking behind the North Stand, facing the Training Grounds so as to exit from Durumblat Road after the game.
Double decker buses carrying Sliema Wanderers fans have allocated parking behind the South Stand, facing the MFA Gym so as to exit from the Żebbuġ area.
These traffic and parking arrangements have been agreed by the Police, MFA and the respective clubs.
The Malta FA urges the fans to follow the instructions given by the police on matchday.