Under-19 Futsal national team place second in UEFA qualifying mini-tournament

The Malta Under-19 Futsal national team ended its commitments with a creditable runner-up spot in Group A of the UEFA Under-19 Futsal Championship preliminary round in Lithuania.

This tournament marked the debut for the Malta in this competition and claiming four points from the three matches was definitely a positive outcome.

In the opening match on Wednesday at the LSC Druskininkai Hall in Druskininkai, Malta lost 0-6 to group winners England. At the end of the first half, England were leading 2-0. Jamie Brooker scored twice with Stanley Young, Joshua Nathan, Oliver Kaye and Oliver Desborough scoreing the other goals.  Malta had Shiraz Attard and Amin Louati sent off.

On Thursday, Malta held Lithuania in a 2-2 draw. Mason Agius put Malta ahead after just 42 seconds but Arian Balasanov equalised for Lithuania. Ivin Gatt restored the lead for Malta but during the second half, Matas Siaurusevicius levelled matters for the hosts. 

In the final match on Saturday, Malta defeated Estonia 4-3. Roman Bazkov put Estonia two goals ahead but towards the end of the first half, Ivin Gatt reduced the gap. Collin Sammut levelled matters and the same player was quick to hand Malta a 3-2 lead. Mason Agius extended the lead for Malta but Raul Manni reduced the arrears for Estonia. Nathan Balzan was sent off for Malta aloing with Roman Bazkov of Estonia.

For this tournament, coach Carlo Scicluna had the following players at his disposal:
goalkeepers Matthias Borg (Lija A.), Zeon Montanaro (Sliema W.) and
players Kubilay Karadol (Balzan FC), Denzel Camilleri (Floriana FC), Nathan Balzan (Swieqi U.), Ivin Gatt (Pietà H.), Keiran Debono (Mtarfa FC), Shiraz Attard (Qormi FC), Collin Sammut (San Gwann FC) Deyan Pace (Gzira FC), Amin Louati (Mellieha SC), Mason Agius (Mosta FC).