Difficult test for Hibernians

Hibernians will be aiming at keeping the pace with leaders Valletta as they take on Floriana in one of the two BOV Premier League matches in programme at the National Stadium on Sunday.

Lying nine points behind Valletta and one behind Balzan, after both registered wins on Saturday, the Paolites cannot afford any result other than a win in their bid to retain the title they won last season, especially after dropping two important points in a 1-1 draw in their last outing against Pembroke Athleta. However theirs will no be easy task as Floriana aim at maintaining the challenge for fourth place which could mean a place in the UEFA Europa League this summer.

The Greens won four of the last six matches and are currently fifth, three points behind Birkirkara and six behind Hibs. In tehir last two games, they defeated bottom-placed duo St. Andrews and Qormi with an identical 3-1 score.

Floriana welcome Steve Pisani, Matteo Piciollo and Emerson Marcelina after serving a one-match ban. Jackson di Lima Siqueira returns for Hibernians but Bjorn Kristensen is ruled out through suspension.

Hibernians defeated Floriana 2-1 and 4-2 in the previous rounds.

Meanwhile Birkirkara start as firm favourites to take the three points as they face a Qormi side lying at the bottom of the table after suffering thirteen consecutive defeats. The Stripes, on the other hand, are coming from three consecutive wins over Tarxien, Sliema and Naxxar. Lying four points behind Balzan and three behind Hibernians, Birkirkara continue to fight for a place in Europe.

Apart from Nikola Vukanac, Birkirkara coach Drazen Besek should have the full squad at his disposal. Qormi, on the other hand, should be in full strength.

In the previous rounds, Birkirkara defeated Qormi 2-1 and 1-0.