Leaders hope to extend positive run

Leaders Birkirkara will be all out to claim the three points on Friday as they take on Sliema Wanderers at the National Stadium, kick-off at 19:30.

Six wins in the last seven matches, including a 1-0 win over second-placed Valletta in their last league outing enabled Paul Zammit’s side to move four points clear on top the BOV Premier League table. Therefore in order to maintain this comfortable lead, the Stripes cannot afford any result other than a win.

Facing the Wanderers will definitely be a tricky task. The Wanderers are coming from two highly disappointing performances – a 0-4 defeat to Qormi in their last league outing and a 2-5 loss to Hamrun Spartans in the quarter-finals of the U*BET FA Trophy.

The defeat to Qormi allowed the Yellows to join the Wanderers in third place and after being eliminated from the FA Trophy, the only chance for Sliema to make it to European football is by securing the runner-up position in the BOV Premier League. Therefore Mark Marlow’s side will also aim at returning to winning ways on Friday.

The two teams met four times this season. Following a 1-0 win for the Blues in the Euro Cup, Birkirkara defeated Sliema 3-0 in the Premier League first round in November. The Wanderers hit back, winning 1-0 in January. In the third round, the Stripes registered a 2-1 win.

Two players are ruled out through suspension – Alan Tabone of Birkirkara and Sliema Wanderers midfielder Pedro Dos Santos Calcado. Dutch striker Sylvano Comvalius should be back for Birkirkara after missing the FA Trophy quarter-final against Valletta.

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