The Malta women’s team will be playing two home friendly matches against Switzerland and Turkey in the coming days. Mark Gatt, the Malta women’s coach, has named a squad of 21 players for these two friendlies.
The first warm-up sees Malta face 19th-ranked Switzerland on Tuesday at the Centenary Stadium (kick-off: 18.30) while the match against Turkey, ranked 69, will take place the following Friday (kick-off 15.00) at the same venue. Both Switzerland and Turkey are conducting training camps in Malta.
These friendlies are intended to boost Malta’s preparations for the UEFA Women’s Euro 2021 Group B qualifiers in March against Georgia and Bosnia & Herzegovina, both at home.
For the friendlies, Gatt can rely on the majority of the players who featured in the first part of the European qualifiers in 2019. These include foreign-based players Nicole Sciberras of Juventus, Shona Zammit, of Pink Bari, Sassari Torres’ Martina Borg and Ylenia Carabott, of Chievo Fortitudo Mozzecane.
League leaders Birkirkara are represented by six players in the squad, namely goalkeeper Janice Xuereb, defensive trio Stephania Farrugia, Alishia Sultana and Ann-Marie Said and midfield duo Gabrielle Zahra and Veronique Mifsud.
In addition, the Malta coach has also included some young faces in goalkeepers Jodie Attard (Raiders Għargħur) and Mġarr United duo Patricia Ebejer and Haley Bugeja, who was part of the national team for the Romania training camp, last year.
Another newcomer is midfielder Sydney Schembri. Aged 22, Schembri currently plays in college football in the United States for Xavier Women’s Soccer with whom she was involved in the NCAA tournament in 2019 – the main championship for college teams in North America.
Janice Xuereb (Birkirkara); Jodie Attard (Raiders Għargħur); Patricia Ebejer (Mġarr United).
Stephania Farrugia, Ann-Marie Said, Alishia Sultana (all Birkirkara); Nicole Sciberras (Juventus, Italy); Rebecca Bajada (Mġarr United); Charlene Zammit (Swieqi United).
Brenda Borg, Claudette Xuereb (both Mġarr United); Gabriella Zahra, Veronique Mifsud (both Birkirkara); Jade Flask, Dorianne Theuma, Simone Buttigieg (all Swieqi United); Sydney Schembri (Xavier Women’s Soccer, US); Shona Zammit (Pink Bari, Italy).
Martina Borg (Sassari Torres, Italy); Haley Bugeja (Mġarr United); Ylenia Carabott (Chievo Fortitudo, Italy).