After missing out on the BOV Premier League title in a decisive clash last April, Birkirkara will be all out to stop champions Valletta from claiming a hat-trick of honours on Friday as the two teams cross swords in the BOV Super Cup final at the National Stadium, kick-off at 19:30.
In fact, after winning the championship thanks to a 2-0 win over the Stripes, the Citizens went on to win the U*BET FA Trophy, defeating Sliema Wanderers 1-0.
However since the end of last season, Valletta went through a number of changes with the departure of coach Andre Paus, foreigners Nukri Revishvili, Irakli Maisuradze and Alan da Silva Souza and Edmond Agius who joined Birkirkara. Jean Pierre Mifsud Triganza joined Balzan on loan while Vladimir Rassulov, Aziz Corr Nyang, Seun Abayomi Owonikoko, Oscar Reyes Sanchez and goalkeeper Pietro Marino were not retained.
City favourite Gilbert Agius was appointed as the new coach and new recruits included goalkeeper Nicky Vella, Malta international defender Ryan Camilleri, Maltese-Australian midfielder Adrian Zahra and Christian Caruana along with foreigners Hamid Al Kamali, Hugo Faria and Raphael Kooh-Sohna.
Steve Borg and Hamza Barry were due to leave but Borg is back after signing a new deal while Barry is set to return in the coming days. However Denni Rocha dos Santos is currently unavailable as he returned to his home-country for family matters.
Birkirkara had less changes in squad but lost key players like Rowen Muscat and Jhonnattann or decided not to retain players like Haruna Shola Shodiya and Frank Temile.
New signings include goalkeeper Adrian Murcia Sanchez and Brazilians Rafael Ledesma, Eliandro Gonzaga and Ellinton Morais. Edmond Agius joined the club from Valletta while Leighton Grech returned with the club after a two-year spell with Qormi.
Holders Birkirkara won the Super Cup six times while Valletta won the competition ten times.