After a short winter break, our national football team will be back on the pitch this evening in an international friendly match against Finland at 7pm at the Ta` Qali National Stadium. National team coach John Buttigieg retained the services of most of his established stars, while Captain Gilbert Agius and Brian Said were surprisingly excluded from the squad of 18 players. On this choice coach Buttigieg stated that “we need to prepare other players to eventually take their place and make sure we give more experience to the players of the future team”.
The comeback of Justin Haber along with the call-up of the in-form Birkirkara midfielder Trevor Cilia will help in rejuvenating the squad which according to Buttigieg “is our ultimate scope right now”. This friendly will provide our coach a good chance to start preparing his team for what we hope will be a positive warm up towards the UEFA Euro Championships 2012 matches, whose draws were made a few weeks ago. Group F, in which Malta was is taking part, includes top teams such as Croatia, Greece, Latvia, Israel and Georgia. On this point, our coach pointed out that “without doubt we need to think about the matches we have round the corner in September”. Also, during the press conference, our Head Coach insisted that the players should do their best since they need “to confirm and consolidate their place in the team”.
In today’s match we hope that our newly refreshed team could give a positive performance as well as a glimpse of what awaits us in the near future. Thus, it is an essential match and the public MUST be present to back our national team and give the support our national team deserves.