The Malta Women’s Under 19 national team, under the direction of coach Mark Gatt, has been preparing for the past ten weeks for the UEFA European Women’s Under-19 Championship first qualifying round mini-tournament in Serbia which kicks-off on Saturday.
All girls have been training very hard and it was only last Friday that the final eighteen players were selected. The most difficult choice was that for a place of goalkeepers as all the three custodians have shown significant progress. This augurs well for the future as the senior team is bound to benefit.
Coach Gatt said “We played five friendlies, during which the team showed steady improvement and I am happy with every single player.”
On a sad note, the team lost its captain, Michelle Zuber due to an injury and will not be travelling with the group. Vice-captain Brenda Borg will now replace her, with Shona Zammit as vice-captain.
Gatt added “Our main aim will remain the same, that is to gain respect from our opponents and work hard to achieve positive results. This will serve as an experience for me and the whole staff.”
Malta faces hosts Serbia in the first match on Saturday, then plays the Netherlands on Monday 23 and finally Bosnia Herzegovina on Thursday 26.
The players selected by Mark Gatt are:
goalkeepers Janice Xuereb (Birkirkara), Keoney Demicoli (Hibs);
defenders Alessia Caschetto (Kirkop), Cassandra Camilleri (Pembroke), Charlene Cassia (Kirkop), Mary Claire Aquilina (Hibs), Moddyanne Refalo (Gozo), Martina Cilia (Birkirkara), Sonia Schembri (Pembroke);
midfielders Alishia Sultana (Birkirkara), Claudette Xuereb (Hamrun), Amber Grech (Pembroke), Anne Marie Muscat (Hibs), Shona Zammit (Kirkop);
forwards Brenda Borg (Mgarr), Jade Flask (Kirkop), Martina Borg (Hibs), Raina Giusti (Birkirkara).
Coach: Mark Gatt
Assistant Coach: Natasha Pace
Goalkeeper’s coach: Roger Camilleri
Team Secretary: Alfred Zammit
Team Doctor: Dr. Daniel McKean
Physio: Elaine Zammit
Photo (1): Copyright © www.stephengatt.com
Photo (2): Copyright © Paul Zammit Cutajar