Maltese FA Trophy

The FA Trophy, currently known as the IZIBET FA Trophy for sponsorship reasons, is an annual football cup competition that takes place in Malta. The cup was founded in 1933; following a match between England and Italy, played in Rome in May 1933, to where a number of pro-British Maltese supporters travelled to support the English side, The Football Association as recognition donated a silver trophy to be played on the model of the FA Cup.

Maltese FA Trophy
Organising bodyMalta Football Association
Founded1933; 89 years ago (1933)
Region Malta
Number of teams67
Qualifier forUEFA Europa Conference League
Domestic cup(s)Maltese Super Cup
Current championsFloriana (21st title)
Most successful club(s)Sliema Wanderers and Floriana (21 titles)
Television broadcastersTVMNews+ (live matches)
WebsiteFA Trophy
2021–22 Maltese FA Trophy

The team who wins the cup, wins a place in the First qualifying round of the UEFA Europa Conference League. This competition is now played on a knock-out basis between all the senior clubs in the Maltese and Gozitan football pyramids. The cup winners play a match for the Maltese Super Cup against the league champions of the season.

FormatEdit

 
Old Maltese FA Trophy from 1935 to 2016
 
Current design of Maltese FA Trophy since 2017

The ten teams from the First Division and the teams which placed from 4th to the 10th position in the previous season's league, participate in the first round. The cup holders and the top 3 teams are seeded. The eight winning teams play again in the second round, after which, four teams remain. The top three teams in the previous' year league and the cup holders enter straight in the quarter-final phase, together with the other four winning teams.

Starting with the 2009–10 competition, the reigning champions of the Gozo First Division will also be entered into the competition. This will be the case unless Gozo FC, a club based on Gozo but which plays in the Maltese leagues, are playing in either the Maltese Premier League or Maltese First Division and would take the place of the Gozo champion.

On 13 January 2011, the Malta Football Association decided to restructure the format of the trophy as from season 2011–12. Following the success of the MFA League Anniversary Cup, where the then 21 teams of the Maltese four-tiered system participated in the competition, the MFA decided to include all the clubs of Maltese leagues, together with the clubs from the Gozo First Division and the Gozo Second Division. The Gozitan clubs and those from the Maltese Third Division would take part in the First Round, joined by the Maltese Second Division and Maltese First Division clubs in the Second Round, and joined by the Maltese Premier League clubs in a Third Round, where the first six teams of the previous season and the Trophy holder would be seeded. The competition remains on a knock-out basis.[1]

On 21 May 2016, the old silver trophy has been replaced by a new one, partially paid by the english FA. The new trophy has been presented right before the match between England and Malta for the 2018 World Cup qualifiers.[2] The new Trophy will be 65 cm in height, and 7 kilogrammes in weight, six of which are solid silver. The trophy will be produced with the traditional methods of silversmithing, by hand. The new Trophy will carry forward the main features of the current FA Trophy, with the player holding the ball aloft being the top part on a silver pedestal, also featured on the current trophy, containing the exact wording which symbolises the bond between the English FA and the Malta FA, the globe and the base will remain identical, with the effigy of the football match found on the current trophy also retaining its place.[3] The new trophy has been designed in the shape of the old Cassar Cup, which was another historical competition of the MFA in which the best two British service teams used to play against the two best Maltese teams for the cup. Veterans recall the passion of these matches with the Maltese football aficionados all rooting for the Maltese teams against the British ones.

Since this new restructuring of the competition in the 2011–12 season, already a major resemblance to the English F.A. Cup is evident as a lot of giant-killings have already taken place. The best story so far has been that of S.K. Victoria Wanderers F.C. reaching the semi-finals of the 2016-17 edition,[4] as they became the first Gozitan club has reached in this competition.

Both the 2019–20 and the 2020–21 seasons of the trophy has been declared abandoned by the MFA due to the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.[5][6]

Winners and finalistsEdit

Season Winners[7] Score[7] Runners–up[7] Venue
1934–35 Sliema Wanderers 4–0 Floriana Empire Stadium, Gżira
1935–36 Sliema Wanderers 2–1 Floriana
1936–37 Sliema Wanderers 2–0 St.George's
1937–38 Floriana 2–1 Sliema Wanderers
1938–39 Melita 4–0 Sliema Wanderers
1939–40 Sliema Wanderers 3–2 Melita
No competitions between 1941 and 1944 due to World War II
1944–45 Floriana 2–1 Sliema Wanderers Empire Stadium, Gżira
1945–46 Sliema Wanderers 2–1 Ħamrun Spartans Empire Stadium, Gżira
1946–47 Floriana 3–0 Valletta Empire Stadium, Gżira
1947–48 Sliema Wanderers 3–2 (a.e.t.) Hibernians Empire Stadium, Gżira
1948–49 Floriana 5–1 Sliema Wanderers Empire Stadium, Gżira
1949–50 Floriana 3–1 St.George's Empire Stadium, Gżira
1950–51 Sliema Wanderers 5–0 Hibernians Empire Stadium, Gżira
1951–52 Sliema Wanderers 4–4 (a.e.t.)
4–3 (pen.)
Hibernians Empire Stadium, Gżira
1952–53 Floriana 1–0 Sliema Wanderers Empire Stadium, Gżira
1953–54 Floriana 5–1 Rabat Ajax Empire Stadium, Gżira
1954–55 Floriana 1–0 Sliema Wanderers Empire Stadium, Gżira
1955–56 Sliema Wanderers 1–0 Floriana Empire Stadium, Gżira
1956–57 Floriana 2–0 Valletta Empire Stadium, Gżira
1957–58 Floriana 2–0 Sliema Wanderers Empire Stadium, Gżira
1958–59 Sliema Wanderers 2–1 (a.e.t.) Valletta Empire Stadium, Gżira
1959–60 Valletta 3–0 Floriana Empire Stadium, Gżira
1960–61 Floriana 2–0 Hibernians Empire Stadium, Gżira
1961–62 Hibernians 1–0 Valletta Empire Stadium, Gżira
1962–63 Sliema Wanderers 2–0 Hibernians Empire Stadium, Gżira
1963–64 Valletta 1–0 Sliema Wanderers Empire Stadium, Gżira
1964–65 Sliema Wanderers 4–2 Floriana Empire Stadium, Gżira
1965–66 Floriana 2–1 Hibernians Empire Stadium, Gżira
1966–67 Floriana 1–0 Hibernians Empire Stadium, Gżira
1967–68 Sliema Wanderers 3–2 Hibernians Empire Stadium, Gżira
1968–69 Sliema Wanderers 3–1 Ħamrun Spartans Empire Stadium, Gżira
1969–70 Hibernians 2–1 Valletta Empire Stadium, Gżira
1970–71 Hibernians 3–1 (a.e.t.) Sliema Wanderers Empire Stadium, Gżira
1971–72 Floriana 3–1 Sliema Wanderers Empire Stadium, Gżira
1972–73 Gżira United 2–0 Birkirkara Empire Stadium, Gżira
1973–74 Sliema Wanderers 1–0 Floriana Empire Stadium, Gżira
1974–75 Valletta 1–0 Hibernians Empire Stadium, Gżira
1975–76 Floriana 2–0 Valletta Empire Stadium, Gżira
1976–77 Valletta 1–0 Floriana Empire Stadium, Gżira
1977–78 Valletta 3–2 Floriana Empire Stadium, Gżira
1978–79 Sliema Wanderers 2–1 Floriana Empire Stadium, Gżira
1979–80 Hibernians 2–1 Sliema Wanderers Empire Stadium, Gżira
1980–81 Floriana 2–1 Senglea Empire Stadium, Gżira
1981–82 Hibernians 2–0 Sliema Wanderers National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1982–83 Ħamrun Spartans 2–0 Valletta National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1983–84 Ħamrun Spartans 1–0 (a.e.t.) Żurrieq National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1984–85 Żurrieq 2–1 (a.e.t.) Valletta National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1985–86 Rabat Ajax 2–0 Żurrieq National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1986–87 Ħamrun Spartans 2–1 Sliema Wanderers National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1987–88 Ħamrun Spartans 4–2 Floriana National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1988–89 Ħamrun Spartans 1–0 Floriana National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1989–90 Sliema Wanderers 1–0 Birkirkara National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1990–91 Valletta 2–1 (a.e.t.) Sliema Wanderers National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1991–92 Ħamrun Spartans 2–1 Valletta National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1992–93 Floriana 5–0 Sliema Wanderers National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1993–94 Floriana 2–1 Valletta National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1994–95 Valletta 1–0 Ħamrun Spartans National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1995–96 Valletta 1–0 (a.e.t.) Sliema Wanderers National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1996–97 Valletta 2–0 Hibernians National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1997–98 Hibernians 2–1 Valletta National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1998–99 Valletta 1–0 (a.e.t.) Birkirkara National Stadium, Ta' Qali
1999–2000 Sliema Wanderers 4–1 Birkirkara National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2000–01 Valletta 3–0 Birkirkara National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2001–02 Birkirkara 1–0 Sliema Wanderers National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2002–03 Birkirkara 1–0 Sliema Wanderers National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2003–04 Sliema Wanderers 2–0 Marsaxlokk National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2004–05 Birkirkara 2–1 Msida St. Joseph National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2005–06 Hibernians 1–0 Floriana National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2006–07 Hibernians 1–1 (a.e.t.)
3–0 (pen.)
Sliema Wanderers National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2007–08 Birkirkara 2–1 Ħamrun Spartans National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2008–09 Sliema Wanderers 3–3 (a.e.t.)
7–6 (pen.)
Valletta National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2009–10 Valletta 2–1 Qormi National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2010–11 Floriana 1–0 Valletta National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2011–12 Hibernians 3–1 Qormi National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2012–13 Hibernians 3–1 Qormi National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2013–14 Valletta 1–0 Sliema Wanderers National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2014–15 Birkirkara 2–0 Hibernians National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2015–16 Sliema Wanderers 0–0 (a.e.t.)
5–4 (pen.)
Balzan National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2016–17 Floriana 2–0 Sliema Wanderers National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2017–18 Valletta 2–1 Birkirkara National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2018–19 Balzan 4–4 (a.e.t.)
5–4 (pen.)
Valletta National Stadium, Ta' Qali
2019–20 Cancelled due to COVID-19 (4 Clubs Left)
2020–21 Cancelled due to COVID-19 (8 Clubs Left)
2021–22 Floriana 2–1 (a.e.t.) Valletta National Stadium, Ta' Qali

Performance by clubEdit

Club Wins First final won Last final won Runners-up Last final lost Total final appearances
Sliema Wanderers 21 1935 2016 19 2017 40
Floriana 21 1938 2022 12 2006 33
Valletta 14 1960 2018 12 2022 26
Hibernians 10 1962 2013 11 2015 21
Ħamrun Spartans 6 1983 1992 4 2008 10
Birkirkara 5 2002 2015 6 2018 11
Melita 1 1939 1939 1 1940 2
Żurrieq 1 1985 1985 2 1986 3
Gżira 1 1973 1973 0 1
Rabat Ajax 1 1986 1986 0 1
Balzan 1 2019 2019 1 2016 2
Msida St. Joseph 0 1 2005 1
Marsaxlokk 0 1 2004 1
Senglea Athletic 0 1 1981 1
St. George's 0 2 1950 2
Qormi 0 3 2013 3

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Changes to National League, FA Trophy format approved". MaltaFootball.com. 13 January 2011.
  2. ^ "Malta receives new FA Trophy prior to Wembley match". Times of Malta. 9 October 2016. Retrieved 30 November 2019.
  3. ^ "The Malta FA unveils the new FA Trophy". MFA. 21 May 2016. Retrieved 30 November 2019.
  4. ^ Busuttil, Antoine (19 February 2017). "SK VICTORIA WANDERERS THROUGH TO FA TROPHY SEMI-FINALS". maltafootball.com. Retrieved 30 November 2019.
  5. ^ Camilleri, Valhmor (2020-05-18). "MFA ends 2019-20 Premier League and FA Trophy". Times of Malta. Retrieved 2021-08-13.
  6. ^ "Sports ban forces termination of domestic competitions". Malta Football Association. 2021-04-09. Retrieved 2021-08-13.
  7. ^ a b c "Malta - List of Cup Finals". RSSSF. Retrieved 20 June 2011.

External linksEdit