Citizens all-out to beat rivals Birkirkara

Following last week’s shock defeat to rivals Floriana, Valletta cannot afford any result other than a win on Sunday as they take on Birkirkara in one of the two BOV Premier League matches in programme at the National Stadium.

The Citizens are now sharing the top spot with Hibernians following the Paolites’ 3-1 win over Balzan on Saturday and with just two rounds of matches to go, Valletta hope to claim maximum points from this game and that against Balzan next week and that Hibs fail to beat Birkirkara in order to avoid having the last league game being a decisive clash for the title.

Having won seven of the last eight matches, the Stripes are currently fourth on 42 points but a win would put them in third place, just three points behind the two joint-leaders and would therefore re-enter the race for the title.

Ryan Camilleri returns for Valletta after serving a one-match ban but Jonathan Caruana and Romeu Romao are suspended. Ryan Scicluna will be back for Birkirkara.

Valletta defeated Birkirkara 2-1 and 4-0 in the previous rounds but in the FA Trophy, Birkirkara eliminated Valletta with a narrow 1-0 win.

Meanwhile in the first match, Qormi hope to end their losing streak as they take on Naxxar Lions.

Qormi lost their last fifteen matches and are currently anchored at the bottom of the table. Unless they beat Naxxar and St. Andrews and at least hold Sliema in a draw, hoping that Naxxar lose to both St. Andrews and Sliema in their last two matches, Qormi would be playing in Division 1 next season.

Naxxar, on the other hand, view this match as an excellent opportunity to move closer to securing tenth place and the play-off against the third team in Division 1. In their last two matches, they earned four points in a win over Mosta and a draw with Pembroke.

Demba Toure and Emerson Vella return for Naxxar and Qormi respectively after serving a one-match ban.

The first round clash ended in a 1-1 draw but Naxxar registered a comfortable 5-0 win in the second.

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