The Malta Football Association is expected to formally admit Marsaxlokk FC to the BOV Third Division following a request by the club. The request was discussed during a meeting of the MFA Executive Committee on Tuesday and a final decision will be taken during the association’s Extraordinary General Meeting to be held next Tuesday.
After finishing sixth last season, the Southseasiders were due to start their BOV First Division campaign with an eight-point penalty after failing to pay before the 31st July deadline the amount of €28,000 – a condition which was tied to the issue of a licence to participate in Division 1 this coming season.
However since the club felt they would be unable to field a competitive squad, Marsaxlokk FC made a formal request to the association to start from the Third Division.
The proposal which is being put forward states that the BOV First Division will be played with thirteen teams and not fourteen as originally scheduled. Therefore no team will replace Marsaxlokk FC in Division 1. The increase from twelve to fourteen teams in the BOV First Division had been approved last season.
On the other hand, with the addition of Marsaxlokk FC to the BOV Third Division 2013/14, the number of teams will increase from thirteen to fourteen. Marsaxlokk FC will still start with an eight-point deduction.
At the end of the coming season, two teams will be relegated from the BOV First Division to the BOV Second Division while three will be promoted from the BOV Second Division to the BOV First Division. On the other hand, three teams will be relegated from the BOV Second Division to the BOV Third Division but four will be promoted from the BOV Third Division to the BOV Second Division.
Marsaxlokk FC had already withdrew its Youth team from the Youth League Section B. This led to a number of changes with Zebbug Rangers replacing them in Section B, Lija Athletic replacing Zebbug in Section C and Marsa replacing Lija Athletic in Section D.
Led by Victor Sciriha as president, Marsaxlokk won the Second Division League in season 1999/2000 and then secured promotion to the Premier League after winning the First Division League in 2001/02. Thanks to the signing of some of Malta’s top players, the club established itself in the Premier League and playing in UEFA competitions.
Marsaxlokk won the BOV Premier League in 2006/07. Despite the departure of Sciriha, Marsaxlokk finished second the following season and fourth in 2008/09. In summer 2009, they were demoted to Division 1 following a match-fixing case but they dominated the BOV First Division League, winning the title to regain Premier League status.
Back in the top division, they finished fourth in 2010/11 but the following season was marred by problems which saw most of their players seeking a move elsewhere. In fact, they were relegated after finishing at the bottom of the table in 2011/12.