Valletta, Birkirkara seek sole leadership

valletta-bkara121006Sole leadership will be at stake as Valletta take on Birkirkara in this weekend’s big match from the BOV Premier League.

The two teams are currently third and second respectively as Hibernians lead the way with 29 points, followed by Birkirkara on 28 and Valletta on 27. Therefore a win for either side would put them on top.

The Stripes won four of the last five matches, losing only to Sliema Wanderers. They are coming from a 7-1 win over Mosta. Valletta, on the other hand, dropped five points in the last two matches after being held in a goalless draw by Sliema and lost 2-3 to Tarxien Rainbows.

William Barbosa returns for Valletta after serving a one-match ban and Mark Miller hopes to have Jonathan Caruana and Luke Dimech back. Birkirkara, on the other hand, are expected to be in full strength.

Valletta and Birkirkara shared the spoils in a 1-1 draw in the first round but the second round clash ended in a 1-0 win for Valletta.

Meanwhile in the second match, Sliema Wanderers and Tarxien Rainbows face each other in what could be a direct clash for a place in European football this summer.

Sliema extended their unbeaten run to six matches and a win over Tarxien could give them joint-leadership with Hibernians and Birkirkara should the Stripes hold Valletta in a draw. They defeated Hibernians 1-0 in their last outing.

On the other hand, buoyed by a fine performance and victory over Valletta, Tarxien aim at maintaining the challenge for a historic place in Europe with a win putting them in third place.

Luca Martinelli is ruled out for Sliema as he serves a one-match ban.

Sliema defeated Tarxien 3-2 in the first round but the Rainbows registered a 2-1 win in the second round.

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