Champions Valletta have appointed Antonio Esposito as director general. Esposito was presented during a press conference at the Le Meridien St. Julian’s along the club’s latest signing Burkina Faso international defender Saïdou Madi Panandétiguiri.
Valletta president Victor Sciriha revealed that after meeting Antonio Esposito two months ago, he expressed interest in helping the club. Sciriha said that he felt the club could benefit from Esposito’s experience to help the club move a step further towards professionalism.
Antonio Esposito is the president of ltalian Serie D side ASD Città di Marino – a small club from the Lazio region – which however have excellent facilities and a good youth sector.
His new role as director general of Valletta FC means that he will be in charge of the club’s transfer market.
Victor Sciriha is convinced that with Esposito’s help – both in terms of finance and experience – the club would finally achieve what it has been aiming for – moving further than the second qualifying round of the UEFA Champions League.
Initial contacts between Valletta and Esposito were established through former Italian defender Mauro Di Lello – a former player of Pietà Hotspurs, Sliema Wanderers and Birkirkara.
In a short speech, Antonio Esposito thanked the club for giving him this opportunity and said he was honoured to be part of Valletta FC’s challenge to do better in Europe. He said he will be putting his experience and contacts at the club’s disposal and revealed that in the final days of the January transfer window, he will be travelling to Milan, to establish a presence for Valletta FC in the transfer market.
Antonio Esposito said that during this trip, he will be on the look-out for possible transfer opportunities and revealed that on Tuesday, an Argentine player will be joining the club for a trial.
The club unveiled its latest signing – twenty-seven year old Burkina Faso international defender Saïdou Madi Panandétiguiri. He joins the club until the end of the season.
Panandétiguiri started his career with Santos FC Ouagadougou and signed his first professional contract with ASFA Yennega. In 2001, Panandétiguiri was scouted by Girondins Bordeaux and after playing for the club’s reserve team, he was transferred to Lokeren in Belgium in 2004. Four years later, he moved to SV Wehen Wiesbaden in Germany but in 2009, Panandétiguiri joined U.D. Leiria in Portugal.
Sciriha said the player will be unavailable to play in the game against Hibernians on Saturday as the international transfer certificate did not arrive by 19:00hrs on Friday when the MFA offices close. He said that it was not fair that MFA offices are not open on a Saturday during this transfer window. The player will be sponsored by Antonio Esposito.
The player will now leave Malta to join the Burkina Faso national team which will be taking part in the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations which will be held in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea between January 21 and February 12. Therefore Panandétiguiri will only be able to play for the Citizens in February.
Saïdou Madi Panandétiguiri said he was honoured to join Valletta as the club the best players at their disposal, including several national team players. He said this was his biggest motivation in choosing to join Valletta. He said he will be doing his best to help the club to achieve its targets.