Malta national football team

The Malta national football team (Maltese: Tim nazzjonali tal-futbol ta' Malta) represents Malta in international football and is controlled by the Malta Football Association, the governing body for football in Malta.

Malta
Shirt badge/Association crest
Nickname(s)Knights of Malta, Ħomor (Reds), Falcons
AssociationMalta Football Association
ConfederationUEFA (Europe)
Head coachDevis Mangia
CaptainAndrei Agius
Most capsMichael Mifsud (143)
Top scorerMichael Mifsud (42)
Home stadiumTa' Qali Stadium
FIFA codeMLT
First colours
Second colours
FIFA ranking
Current 175 Steady (27 May 2021)[1]
Highest66 (September 1994, September 1995)
Lowest191 (July 2017, September 2017)
First international
 Malta 2–3 Austria 
(Gżira, Malta; 24 February 1957)
Biggest win
 Malta 7–1 Liechtenstein 
(Ta' Qali, Malta; 26 March 2008)
Biggest defeat
 Spain 12–1 Malta 
(Seville, Spain; 21 December 1983)

The first official game played by Malta was a 3–2 defeat in a friendly against Austria in 1957.[3] Their competitive debut arrived five years later, playing against Denmark in the preliminary round of the 1964 European Nations' Cup.[4] Since becoming a UEFA member in 1960 and a FIFA member in 1959,[5] Malta have competed in every qualifier for the European Championship and World Cup, but have never made it to the finals of any major international competition.

HistoryEdit

Malta played its first international game on 24 February 1957 at the Empire Stadium, losing 2–3 to Austria. That match was played in front of a capacity crowd at the old Empire Stadium. The Malta Football Association joined FIFA in 1959 and UEFA a year later. However, in late 1959, Malta played in the 1960 Summer Olympics African Qualifiers against Morocco and Tunisia, in which they finished last in the group with two draws and two losses.

The Maltese international side first competed in the qualifying rounds of the UEFA European Nations Cup in 1962, and in FIFA World Cup qualification in 1971.[6] Malta's first competitive draw ended 1–1 against Greece in 1970. Malta's first two competitive wins were victories of 2–0 and 2–1 at home to Greece and Iceland in European Championship qualifiers in 1975 and 1982 respectively. In 1979, Malta drew 0–0 with West Germany in a European championship qualifier and they met again on 16 December 1984 for a memorable World Cup Qualifier in front of a record attendance at the Ta'Qali stadium, where the 1982 & eventual 1986 World Cup runners-up only managed a 2–3 win. Another prestigious result was achieved in March 1987 when Malta drew 2–2 in Portugal, in a qualifier for Euro'88 and the side also twice drew against Hungary during the qualification for the 1990 FIFA World Cup, and recorded four friendly wins during 1991 and 1992.[4]

Malta's third competitive win came with a 1–0 victory away to Estonia in a 1993 World Cup qualifier in which Kris Laferla scored.[7] In October 1994 Malta held Czech Republic 0–0 in a qualifier for the UEFA Euro 1996, in which the latter ended runners-up. Six years later, in October 2000, in a group qualifying match for the 2002 World Cup, once again Malta managed another 0–0 draw vs Czech Republic which eventually cost the latter a place at the following major tournament. In June 2000, Malta played England, then managed by Kevin Keegan. Trailing 2–1 going into the final minutes, Malta were awarded a penalty, however David Carabott's effort was saved by Richard Wright.[8] Through November 2001 and May 2002, Malta played and remained undefeated in 6 international matches and in between they won the locally hosted (Rothmans) International Tournament. During 2005, Malta drew 1–1 against Croatia and Bulgaria. Another positive result was the 1–1 home draw in a friendly match against Northern Ireland, though George Mallia missed an injury time penalty which would have given them a win.[9] On 11 October 2006, Malta managed another competitive victory, a 2–1 triumph over Hungary in the European Championship qualifying with André Schembri scoring twice.[7]

On 7 February 2007, Malta drew 1–1 with one of the hosts of Euro 2008, Austria. The game was played to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first international match played by the Maltese national team.[10] On 8 September 2007, Malta managed another draw against Turkey in a Euro 2008 qualifying match, the game finishing 2–2.[11] On 26 March 2008, Malta achieved its largest ever victory, a 7–1 defeat of Liechtenstein in a friendly at the Ta' Qali Stadium, with Michael Mifsud scoring five goals.[12] A 2–0 friendly win over Georgia followed in 2009.[13]

In May 2010, sponsorship of the Maltese national side was taken on by sportswear firm Givova, who also designed a range of new kits for the team.[14] One month later, however, the side had fallen to their lowest ever FIFA world ranking position, of 169th in the world.[13] In 2009, Malta had a 0–0 draw with Albania at home. This was their only point for the 2010 World Cup qualifying. On 11 August 2010, Malta drew 1–1 at home against FYR Macedonia in a friendly game, with Michael Mifsud scoring a brilliant diving header for Malta.[15]

In February 2011, the side achieved a 0–0 draw against Switzerland, in which goalkeeper Justin Haber saved two penalties.[13] On 6 September 2011, Malta won their first Euro 2012 qualifying point, with a 1–1 draw against Georgia. During the years of 2010 and 2011, Malta did not get many positive results, and coach John Buttigieg and assistant coach Carmel Busittil were both sacked in October 2011.[16] For the 2014 FIFA World Cup qualification campaign, Malta won their first World Cup qualifying match in 20 years, nabbing a 1–0 win over Armenia in June 2013.[17] In June 2017, Malta defeated Ukraine 1–0 in a friendly match, thanks to a lone goal by defender Zach Muscat. [18]Malta recorded their 7th all-time competitive win (and their first in the UEFA Nations League) on October 13, 2020, defeating Latvia 1-0 in Riga, scoring the winning goal in the 97th minute.

KitsEdit

Kit supplier Period
  Adidas 1978-88
  Umbro 1988-90
  Lotto 1990-99
  Kronos 1999-01
  Erreà 2001-05
  Diadora 2005-09
  Givova 2009-Present

Coaching staffEdit

As of 9 July 2020[19]
Manager   Devis Mangia
Assistant Manager   Davide Mazzotta
Assistant Manager   Guillermo Giacomazzi
Goalkeeping Coach   Mario Capece
Physical Trainer   Luca Pagani
Sport Scientist   Francesco Zanasi

PlayersEdit

Current squadEdit

The following 29 players were called up for the friendly matches against   Northern Ireland,   Kosovo and   Kazakhstan on 31 May, 4 and 7 June 2021, respectively. [20]

No. Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club
1 1GK Henry Bonello (1988-10-13) 13 October 1988 (age 32) 28 0   Ħamrun Spartans
16 1GK Jake Galea (1996-04-15) 15 April 1996 (age 25) 2 0   Sliema Wanderers
12 1GK Matthew Calleja Cremona (1994-09-14) 14 September 1994 (age 26) 0 0   Hibernians

5 2DF Andrei Agius (captain) (1986-08-12) 12 August 1986 (age 34) 100 6   Hibernians
2 2DF Kurt Shaw (1999-04-01) 1 April 1999 (age 22) 11 0   Sliema Wanderers
4 2DF Ferdinando Apap (1992-07-29) 29 July 1992 (age 29) 7 0   Hibernians
15 2DF Jean Borg (1998-01-08) 8 January 1998 (age 23) 5 0   Valletta
22 2DF Cain Attard (1994-09-10) 10 September 1994 (age 26) 7 0   Birkirkara
2DF Enrico Pepe (1989-11-12) 12 November 1989 (age 31) 3 0   Birkirkara
13 2DF Karl Micallef (1996-09-08) 8 September 1996 (age 24) 2 0   Ħamrun Spartans
18 2DF Dexter Xuereb (1997-09-21) 21 September 1997 (age 23) 1 0   Gżira United

11 3MF Rowen Muscat (1991-06-05) 5 June 1991 (age 30) 52 1   Ras Al Khaimah
19 3MF Bjorn Kristensen (1993-04-05) 5 April 1993 (age 28) 30 0   Hibernians
7 3MF Joseph Mbong (1997-07-15) 15 July 1997 (age 24) 28 1   Ħamrun Spartans
3MF Steve Pisani (1992-08-07) 7 August 1992 (age 28) 28 0   Balzan
8 3MF Jake Grech (1997-11-18) 18 November 1997 (age 23) 16 0   Hibernians
3MF Juan Carlos Corbalan (1997-03-03) 3 March 1997 (age 24) 15 1   Ħamrun Spartans
3 3MF Ryan Camenzuli (1994-09-08) 8 September 1994 (age 26) 15 0   Floriana
17 3MF Teddy Teuma (1993-09-30) 30 September 1993 (age 27) 11 0   Union Saint Gilloise
6 3MF Dunstan Vella (1996-04-27) 27 April 1996 (age 25) 8 0   Hibernians
23 3MF Tristan Caruana (1991-09-15) 15 September 1991 (age 29) 5 1   Valletta
3MF Nikolai Muscat (1996-07-13) 13 July 1996 (age 25) 2 0   Gżira United
3MF Yannick Yankam (1997-12-12) 12 December 1997 (age 23) 0 0   Birkirkara

14 4FW Jean Paul Farrugia (1992-03-21) 21 March 1992 (age 29) 18 2   Sliema Wanderers
10 4FW Jurgen Degabriele (1996-10-10) 10 October 1996 (age 24) 11 2   Hibernians
24 4FW Luke Montebello (1995-08-13) 13 August 1995 (age 25) 11 0   Birkirkara
20 4FW Alexander Satariano (2001-10-25) 25 October 2001 (age 19) 8 1   Frosinone Calcio
21 4FW Shaun Dimech (2001-08-08) 8 August 2001 (age 19) 6 2   Valletta
4FW Aidan Friggieri (1998-04-28) 28 April 1998 (age 23) 0 0   Gudja United

Recent call-upsEdit

The following players have been called up within the last 12 months.

Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club Latest call-up
GK Rashed Al-Tumi (2000-10-14) 14 October 2000 (age 20) 0 0   Arzachena

DF Steve Borg (1988-01-08) 8 January 1988 (age 33) 58 3   Gżira United
DF Zach Muscat (1993-08-22) 22 August 1993 (age 27) 44 1   Casa Pia

MF Matthew Guillaumier (1998-04-09) 9 April 1998 (age 23) 11 1   Birkirkara
MF Nevin Portelli (1999-09-16) 16 September 1999 (age 21) 0 0   Gżira United
MF Neil Tabone (1997-10-01) 1 October 1997 (age 23) 1 0   Zejtun Corinthians
MF Samir Arab (1994-03-25) 25 March 1994 (age 27) 1 0   Balzan
MF Zach Scerri (1996-03-08) 8 March 1996 (age 25) 0 0   Gżira United

FW Jan Busuttil (1999-03-06) 6 March 1999 (age 22) 1 0   Floriana
FW Luke Gambin (1993-03-16) 16 March 1993 (age 28) 30 1   Ħamrun Spartans
FW Kyrian Nwoko (1997-07-04) 4 July 1997 (age 24) 20 3   St. Patrick's Athletic
FW Paul Mbong (2001-09-02) 2 September 2001 (age 19) 6 0   Birkirkara

INJ Withdrew due to injury
PRE Preliminary squad / standby
RET Retired from the national team
SUS Serving suspension
WD Player withdrew from the squad due to non-injury issue.

Results and fixturesEdit

The following is a list of match results in the last 12 months, as well as any future matches that have been scheduled.

2020Edit

3 September 2020–21 UEFA Nations League Faroe Islands   3–2   Malta Tórshavn, Faroe Islands
19:45
Report
Stadium: Tórsvøllur
Attendance: 0
Referee: Ádám Farkas (Hungary)
6 September 2020–21 UEFA Nations League Malta   1–1   Latvia Ta' Qali, Malta
20:45
Report
Stadium: National Stadium
Attendance: 0
Referee: Stéphanie Frappart (France)
7 October Friendly Malta   2–0   Gibraltar Ta' Qali, Malta
20:45
Report Stadium: National Stadium
Attendance: 0
Referee: Nikola Popov (Bulgaria)
Note: The Malta v Gibraltar match, originally scheduled for 26 March 2020, at the National Stadium, Ta' Qali was postponed due to the coronavirus. The match was later rescheduled to 7 October.
10 October 2020–21 UEFA Nations League Andorra   0–0   Malta Andorra la Vella, Andorra
20:45 Report Stadium: Estadi Nacional
Referee: Alain Durieux (Luxembourg)
13 October 2020–21 UEFA Nations League Latvia   0–1   Malta Riga, Latvia
18:00 Report
Stadium: Daugava Stadium
Referee: Iwan Arwel Griffith (Wales)
11 November Friendly Malta   3–0   Liechtenstein Ta' Qali, Malta
19:45
Report Stadium: National Stadium
Attendance: 0
Referee: Manfredas Lukjančukas (Lithuania)
14 November 2020–21 UEFA Nations League Malta   3–1   Andorra Ta' Qali, Malta
15:00
Report
Stadium: National Stadium
Attendance: 0
Referee: Peter Kralović (Slovakia)
17 November 2020–21 UEFA Nations League Malta   1–1   Faroe Islands Ta' Qali, Malta
20:45
Report
Stadium: National Stadium
Attendance: 0
Referee: Kristo Tohver (Estonia)

2021Edit

24 March 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Malta   1–3   Russia Ta' Qali, Malta
20:45
Report
Stadium: National Stadium
Attendance: 0
Referee: Peter Kjaesgaard (Denmark)
27 March 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Slovakia   2–2   Malta Trnava, Slovakia
20:45
Report
Stadium: Štadión Antona Malatinského
Referee: Harald Lechner (Austria)
30 March 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Croatia   3–0   Malta Rijeka, Croatia
20:45
Report Stadium: Stadion Rujevica
Referee: Lionel Tschudi (Switzerland)
30 May Friendly Malta   0–3   Northern Ireland Klagenfurt, Austria
18:0 Report
Stadium: Wörtherseestadion
Referee: Sebastian Gishamer (Austria)
4 June Friendly Malta   1–2   Kosovo Klagenfurt, Austria
18:00
Report
Stadium: Wörtherseestadion
Attendance: 0
Referee: Christopher Jäger (Austria)
7 June Friendly Malta   Cancelled   Kazakhstan Wolfsberg, Austria
18:00 Stadium: Lavanttal-Arena
1 September 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Malta   v   Cyprus Ta' Qali, Malta
20:45 Stadium: National Stadium
4 September 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Slovenia   v   Malta Ljubljana, Slovenia
18:00 Stadium: Stožice Stadium
7 September 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Russia   v   Malta Volgograd, Russia
20:45 Stadium: Volgograd Arena
8 October 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Malta   v   Slovenia Ta' Qali, Malta
20:45 Stadium: National Stadium
11 November 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Malta   v   Croatia Ta' Qali, Malta
20:45 Stadium: National Stadium
14 November 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Malta   v   Slovakia Ta' Qali, Malta
15:00 Stadium: National Stadium

RecordsEdit

As of 6 June 2021[21]
Players in bold are still active with Malta.

Competitive recordEdit

FIFA World CupEdit

FIFA World Cup record FIFA World Cup qualification record
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA Pld W D L GF GA
  1930 Not a FIFA member Not a FIFA member
  1934
  1938
  1950
  1954
  1958
  1962
  1966
  1970
  1974 Did not qualify 6 0 0 6 1 20
  1978 6 0 0 6 0 27
  1982 4 0 0 4 2 15
  1986 8 0 1 7 6 25
  1990 8 0 2 6 3 18
  1994 10 1 1 8 3 23
  1998 10 0 0 10 2 37
    2002 10 0 1 9 4 24
  2006 10 0 3 7 4 32
  2010 10 0 1 9 0 26
  2014 10 1 0 9 5 28
  2018 10 0 1 9 3 25
  2022 To be determined To be determined
      2026
Total 0/21 102 2 10 90 33 300

UEFA European ChampionshipEdit

UEFA European Championship record UEFA European Championship qualifying record
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA Pld W D L GF GA
  1960 Not a UEFA member Not a UEFA member
  1964 Did not qualify 2 0 0 2 2 9
  1968 Did not enter Did not enter
  1972 Did not qualify 6 0 1 5 2 16
  1976 6 1 0 5 2 20
  1980 6 0 1 5 2 21
  1984 8 1 0 7 5 37
  1988 8 0 2 6 4 21
  1992 8 0 2 6 2 23
  1996 10 0 2 8 2 22
    2000 8 0 0 8 6 27
  2004 8 0 1 7 5 24
    2008 12 1 2 9 10 31
    2012 10 0 1 9 4 21
  2016 10 0 2 8 3 16
  2020 10 1 0 9 3 27
  2024 To be determined 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 0/16 106 4 14 94 52 315

UEFA Nations LeagueEdit

UEFA Nations League record
Year Division Group Round Position Pld W D L GF GA P/R RK
2018–19 D 3 Group stage 4th 6 0 3 3 5 14   54th
2020–21 D 1 Group stage 2nd 6 2 3 1 8 6   52nd
2022–23 D TBA To be determined
Total Group stage 2/2 12 2 6 4 13 20 52nd

Mediterranean GamesEdit

Mediterranean Games record
Year Round GP W D L GS GA
  1951 - 0 0 0 0 0 0
  1955 - 0 0 0 0 0 0
  1959 - 0 0 0 0 0 0
  1963 - 4 0 0 4 4 18
  1967 - 0 0 0 0 0 0
  1971 - 0 0 0 0 0 0
 1975 - 0 0 0 0 0 0
  1979 - 0 0 0 0 0 0
  1983 - 0 0 0 0 0 0
  1987 - 0 0 0 0 0 0
1991 – present See Malta national under-20 team
Total 1/10 4 0 0 4 4 18

Other recordsEdit

Year Position
  7th November Cup 1993 3rd
Total 0 title

All-time team recordEdit

As of 18 November 2019 after match against the   Norway[22]

  Positive Record   Neutral Record   Negative Record

  1. ^ Includes matches against   Czechoslovakia.
  2. ^ Includes matches against   West Germany.

ManagersEdit

Managerial historyEdit

As of 14 October 2018
Manager Malta career Played Won Drawn Lost Win %
  Joe A. Griffiths 1957–1961 6 2 2 2 033.3
  Carm Borg 1961–1964 9 0 2 7 000.0
  Janos Bedl 1966 2 2 0 0 100.0
  Tony Formosa[1] 1966 10 1 1 8 010.0
  Joseph Attard 1969 1 0 0 1 000.0
  Saviour Cuschieri 1970 1 0 1 0 000.0
  Victor Scerri 1973 2 1 0 1 050.0
  Terrenzio Polverini 1974–1976 9 1 2 6 011.1
  John Calleja 1976–1978 11 2 1 8 018.2
  Victor Scerri 1978–1983 26 3 3 20 011.5
  Guentcho Dobrev 1984–1987 21 1 4 16 004.8
  Horst Heese 1988–1991 36 3 8 25 008.3
  Pippo Psaila 1991–1993 17 5 4 8 029.4
  Pietro Ghedin 1993–1995 24 4 5 15 016.7
  Robert Gatt 1996 3 0 1 2 000.0
  Milorad Kosanović 1996–1997 15 0 2 13 000.0
  Josif Ilić 1997–2001 41 5 4 32 012.2
  Sigfried Held 2001–2003 21 4 5 12 019.0
  Horst Heese[2] 2003–2006 15 1 2 12 006.7
  Dušan Fitzel[2] 2006–2009 34 3 4 27 008.8
  John Buttigieg[2] 2009–2011 21 2 3 16 009.5
  Robert Gatt[3] 2012 1 1 0 0 100.0
  Pietro Ghedin 2012–2017 48 7 6 35 014.6
  Tom Saintfiet 2017–2018 3 0 0 3 000.0
  Ray Farrugia 2018–2019 18 1 4 13 005.6
  Devis Mangia[23] 2019– 13 4 4 5 030.8
  1. ^ 1 match with Janos Bedl
  2. ^ a b c assisted by Carmel Busuttil
  3. ^ managed the team on a one-off basis as caretaker manager

FIFA rankingEdit

Rank Date
Worst Ever Rank 191[13] July 2017, September 2017
Best Ever Rank 66 September 1994, September 1995
Current Rank 175 May 2021

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "The FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking". FIFA. 27 May 2021. Retrieved 27 May 2021.
  2. ^ Elo rankings change compared to one year ago. "World Football Elo Ratings". eloratings.net. 1 August 2021. Retrieved 1 August 2021.
  3. ^ Baldacchino, Carmel (6 February 2007). "Malta's late rally thrills home crowd on debut". Times of Malta. Retrieved 7 October 2018.
  4. ^ a b "National Team All Time Results". Malta Football Association. Retrieved 2 September 2011.
  5. ^ "Member associations – Malta". UEFA. Retrieved 7 October 2018.
  6. ^ "History of the Malta Football Association". Malta Football Association. Archived from the original on 27 September 2011. Retrieved 28 July 2011.
  7. ^ a b Brincat, Henry (15 October 2006). "Malta 2–1 Hungary". The Malta Independent. Archived from the original on 9 January 2014. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
  8. ^ "Malta v England: Clockwatch". BBC. 3 June 2000. Retrieved 14 May 2014.
  9. ^ "Malta 1–1 Northern Ireland". BBC. 17 August 2005. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
  10. ^ "Malta to play Euro 2008 co-hosts Austria on 30 May". The Malta Independent. 22 December 2007. Archived from the original on 30 March 2012. Retrieved 2 September 2011.
  11. ^ Huggins, Trevor (9 September 2007). "England notch easy win against Israel". Reuters UK.
  12. ^ "Five-goal Mifsud inspires Malta to massive win". The Times of Malta. 27 March 2008.
  13. ^ a b c d "Malta make ground from Swiss denial". fifa.com. 7 April 2011.
  14. ^ "High-profile friendly a useful test – Buttigieg". The Times of Malta. 11 May 2010.
  15. ^ "Malta-Macedonia draw 1–1". The Times of Malta. 11 August 2010.
  16. ^ "Malta fires national coach John Buttigieg". ESPN. 26 October 2011.
  17. ^ Azzopardi, Kevin (7 June 2013). "Resilient Malta stun Armenia". Times of Malta.
  18. ^ "Friendly match: Malta obtains encouraging win against Ukraine". The Malta Independent. 6 June 2017.
  19. ^ "Capece and Zanasi join national team's coaching staff". Malta Football Association. 9 July 2020. Retrieved 9 July 2020.
  20. ^ "Malta senior squad update". Malta Football Association. 3 October 2020. Retrieved 4 October 2020.
  21. ^ Mamrud, Roberto. "Malta – Record International Players". RSSSF. Retrieved 8 June 2014.
  22. ^ "World Football Elo Ratings: Malta". Elo Ratings. Retrieved 12 August 2017.
  23. ^ "Devis Mangia appointed national teams' head coach". Times of Malta. 31 December 2019. Retrieved 1 January 2020.

External linksEdit