Malta coach Ray Farrugia has named a 26-strong squad for the forthcoming EURO 2020 Group F qualifiers against Sweden and the Faroe Islands.
The national team resume their qualifying campaign with a match against Sweden on October 12 at the National Stadium (kick-off 20.45) before travelling to the Faroe Islands for the second commitment – October 15 – during the upcoming international week.
Sliema Wanderers defender Kurt Shaw has been promoted from the Malta U-21 squad, earning his first call-up at senior level, while experienced Valletta centre-half Jonathan Caruana has earned a recall after recovering from surgery which kept him out of last month’s qualifiers away to Norway (0-2) and Romania (0-1).
Birkirkara forward Michael Mifsud, the country’s most representative player and all-time leading scorer, is also back in the frame for this month’s qualifiers.
Apart from the inclusion of the 20-year-old Shaw, Farrugia and his coaching team have opted for continuity by keeping faith with the players who were part of the squad for last month’s qualifiers. Matthew Guillaumier, the Birkirkara midfielder, is still sidelined with injury.
Malta have three points in Group F ahead of their home meeting with second-placed Sweden who have 11 points, seven behind leaders Spain.
Henry Bonello (Valletta); Justin Haber (Gżira United); Andrew Hogg (Birkirkara).
Andrei Agius, Ferdinando Apap, Joseph Mbong (all Hibernians); Steve Borg, Jonathan Caruana, Joseph Zerafa (all Valletta); Karl Micallef (Ħamrun Spartans); Zach Muscat (SC Olhanense, Portugal); Jurgen Pisani (Floriana); Kurt Shaw (Sliema Wanderers); Dexter Xuereb (Mosta).
Triston Caruana (Ħamrun Spartans); Juan Corbalan (Gżira United); Paul Fenech (Balzan); Luke Gambin (Colchester United, England); Jake Grech, Dunstan Vella (both Hibernians); Nikolai Muscat (Gżira United); Rowen Muscat (Valletta).
Alfred Effiong (Balzan); Jean Paul Farrugia (Sliema Wanderers); Michael Mifsud (Birkirkara); Kyrian Nwoko (Valletta).