The Malta Under-17 team are putting the finishing touches to their preparations for the 2019 UEFA U-17 Championship qualifying round tournament, being played in Slovenia between October 24 and 30. Hosts Slovenia, Austria and Bulgaria are the other teams in Group 3.
Noel Turner, the Malta Under-17 coach who is assisted by Mark Marlow, has named a squad of 20 players ahead of the team’s departure to Slovenia on Monday.
The Maltese youngsters face Austria in their opening match at the NNC Brdo in Kranj on Wednesday at 11.00. Three days later, they meet Slovenia at 15.00 at the same venue before concluding their commitments against Bulgaria on October 30 at the Stanko Mlakar stadium (kick-off 14.30).
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Pietà Hotspurs are the most represented club in Turner’s squad selection with six players while St Andrews and Mosta have two each.
Goalkeeper Miguel Spiteri, now on the books of Spanish club Getafe, will miss the tournament as he is recovering from knee surgery.
The Malta U-17 squad have had a strong build-up for this tournament, playing two friendly matches against Macedonia U-17s at the Ta’ Qali Training Grounds in August before taking part in the Trofeo Nereo Rocco Tournament in Italy where they figured in draws against Red Star Belgrade (1-1) and Bologna (2-2) and lost 1-0 to Juventus in their final group match.
MALTA U-17 SQUAD
Dylan Ciappara (Mosta); Matthias Debono (Ħamrun Spartans).
Gianluca Borg (Pietà Hotspurs); Ismael Borg (Lija Athletic); Matthew Ellul (Hibernians); Sheldon Mizzi (Pietà Hotspurs); Luke Musu (San Ġwann); Owen Spiteri (San Ġwann); Isaac Galea (Floriana).
Emerson Camilleri (Pietà Hotspurs); Nikolai Farrugia Cross (Birkirkara); Jordan Kelly (St Andrews); Kurt Desira (Valletta); Karl Mohnani (Melita); Gianluca Sciberras (Mosta); Kurt Briffa (Pietà Hotspurs).
Jake Bone (Pietà Hotspurs); Victor Degiorgio (Pietà Hotspurs); Jake Engerer (Frosinone); Mattia Veselji (St Andrews).