The MFA’s initiative to bring the Malta national teams closer to the public is finding fertile ground through the schools visits by the team players which are intended to raise an awareness that the Malta national sides belong to everyone in our islands. Such visits go a long way towards instilling in our youngsters the feeling that the representative teams belong also to them.
The enthusiasm that was generated amongst a number of girls aged between five and ten attending the Sacred Heart School, St Julian’s, during a recent visit of seven Malta players representing our two senior national teams was testimony to the affection these youngsters have for our country’s footballers. This was the first in a series of school visits this season and the first to a church school.
A number of approximately 400 girls from the school were able to meet four male representatives, Roderick Briffa, Clayton Failla, Justin Haber and Alex Muscat, and three females, Dorianne Theuma, Gabriella Zahra and Charlene Zammit from the women’s team, all of whom were given a warm welcome by the girls.
Joining the players were an MFA delegation made up of MFA Technical Director Robert Gatt, Head of Marketing Norman Saliba, Deputy General (Secretary Grassroots) Maria Mifsud, National team media officer Mark Muscat and women’s national team secretary Alfred Zammit.
Head of School, Ms Carmen Cremona addressed the guests, saying that the schoolchildren were grateful to have been given the opportunity to meet some of the country’s top footballers and this after the wonderful experience that they were given through sessions organised by the MFA to promote girls’ football thanks to girls’ festivals.
Robert Gatt dwelt on the importance of participation by our youngsters in sport and of being one’s country’s ambassador.
The players, on their part, spoke about their experiences, with Justin Haber’s comment advising the girls to set up their dreams and work towards achieving them, being the most striking. The footballers then signed autographs on team squad posters which were then distributed to all the girls.
The association’s technical director presented Ms Cremona on behalf of the school, with a national team shirt.
At the end the possibility of further collaboration between the MFA and the school was discussed.
The next planned visit by our footballers will be to St Thomas More Boys’ Junior Lyceum, Hamrun, during the last week of February.
Photos: Copyright © domenic aquilina