Malta national football team
|Nickname(s)||Knights of Malta, Ħomor (Reds), Falcons|
|Association||Malta Football Association|
|Head coach||Pietro Ghedin|
|Most caps||David Carabott (122)|
|Top scorer||Michael Mifsud (40)|
|Home stadium||Ta' Qali Stadium|
|Current||158 1 (5 November 2015)|
|Highest||66 (September 1994, September 1995)|
|Lowest||173 (July 2011)|
|Current||157 (9 September 2015)|
|Highest||98 (February 1992)|
|Lowest||164 (October 2001)|
| Malta 2–3 Austria
(Gżira, Malta; February 24, 1957)
| Malta 7–1 Liechtenstein
(Ta' Qali, Malta; March 26, 2008)
| Spain 12–1 Malta
(Seville, Spain; December 21, 1983)
The Malta national football team represents Malta in international football and is controlled by the Malta Football Association. Malta played its first international game on 24 February 1957 against Austria, and began competing for qualification to major tournaments in 1962. The side's first competitive victory arrived in 1975 against Greece. Considered to be one of the weaker sides in Europe, Malta has never made it to the finals of any major international competition. They have however never ranked at the bottom of the FIFA World Rankings. They got as high as 66th in the top 100.
- 1 History
- 2 Recent results and upcoming fixtures
- 3 Players
- 4 Competitive record
- 5 Managers
- 6 FIFA ranking
- 7 References
- 8 External links
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. The international side first competed in the qualifying rounds of the UEFA European Nations Cup in 1962, and in FIFA World Cup qualification in 1971.
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.
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. 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. 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. On 11 October 2006, Malta managed another competitive victory, a 2–1 triumph over Hungary in the European Championship qualifying with Andre Schembri scoring twice.
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. On 8 September 2007 Malta managed another draw against Turkey in a Euro 2008 qualifying match, the game finishing 2–2. 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. A 2–0 friendly win over Georgia followed in 2009.
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. One month later, however, the side had fallen to their lowest ever FIFA world ranking position, of 169th in the world. 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 European Championship qualifying game, with Michael Mifsud scoring a brilliant diving header for Malta.
In February 2011 the side achieved a 0–0 draw against Switzerland, in which goalkeeper Justin Haber saved two penalties. Mifsud scored twice on 10 August 2011, when Malta beat the Central African Republic 2–1 at home. 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. Malta has been drawn in a group with Italy, Denmark, Bulgaria, Czech Republic and Armenia for qualification to the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil. In their match vs Armenia in June 2013, Malta claimed their first world cup qualifying win in 20 years, nabbing a 1-0 victory. Michael Mifsud scored the all important goal for Malta.
Recent results and upcoming fixtures
|5 March 2014 Friendly||Albania||2 – 0||Malta||Durrës, Albania|
|17:00 GMT||Basha 26'
|Report||Stadium: Niko Dovana Stadium
Referee: Dejan Jakimovski (Macedonia)
|4 June 2014 Friendly||Gibraltar||1 – 0||Malta||Faro, Portugal|
|18:00 CET (UTC+1)||Casciaro 64'||Report||Stadium: Estádio Algarve
Referee: João Carlos Santos Capela (Portugal)
|4 September 2014 Friendly||Slovakia||1 – 0||Malta||Žilina, Slovakia|
|19:20 (UTC+2)||Nemec 43'||Report||Stadium: Štadión pod Dubňom
Referee: Miroslav Zelinka (Czech Republic)
|9 September 2014 UEFA Euro 2016 Q||Croatia||2 – 0||Malta||Zagreb, Croatia|
|20:45 (UTC+2)||Modrić 46'
|Report||Stadium: Stadion Maksimir
Referee: Vladislav Bezborodov (Russia)
|10 October 2014 UEFA Euro 2016 Q||Malta||0 – 3||Norway||Ta' Qali, Malta|
|20:45 (UTC+2)||Report||Stadium: Ta' Qali National Stadium
Referee: Antony Gautier (France)
|13 October 2014 UEFA Euro 2016 Q||Malta||0 – 1||Italy||Ta' Qali, Malta|
|20:45 (UTC+2)||Report||Pelle 24'||Stadium: Ta' Qali National Stadium
Referee: Ovidiu Hațegan (Romania)
16 November 2014 UEFA Euro 2016 Q
|Bulgaria||1 – 1||Malta||Sofia, Bulgaria|
|Galabinov 6'||Report||Failla 49' (pen.)||Stadium: Vasil Levski Stadium
Referee: Martin Strömbergsson (Sweden)
|25 March 2015 Friendly||Georgia||2 – 0||Malta||Tbilisi, Georgia|
|18:00 CET||Kankava 83'
|Report||Stadium: Mikheil Meskhis Stadium
Referee: Aleksandrs Anufrijevs (Latvia)
8 June 2015 Friendly
|Malta||2 – 0||Lithuania||Ta' Qali, Malta|
|Report||Stadium: Ta' Qali National Stadium
Referee: Sven Bindels (Luxembourg)
12 June 2015 UEFA Euro 2016 Q
|Malta||0 – 1||Bulgaria||Ta' Qali, Malta|
|Report||I. Popov 56'||Stadium: Ta' Qali National Stadium
Referee: Aleksandar Stavrev (Macedonia)
3 September 2015 UEFA Euro 2016 Q
|Italy||1 – 0||Malta||Florence, Italy|
|G. Pelle 69'||Report||Stadium: Stadio Artemio Franchi
Referee: Ivan Kružliak (Slovakia)
6 September 2015 UEFA Euro 2016 Q
|Malta||2 – 2||Azerbaijan||Ta' Qali, Malta|
|M. Mifsud 55'
A. Effiong 71'
|Report||R. Amirguliyev 36'
R. Amirguliyev 80'
|Stadium: Ta' Qali National Stadium
Referee: Harald Lechner (Austria)
The following players have been called up to the Maltese squad within the last year.(retired players will not appear in this following line up)
- As of 13 October 2015
Players with an equal number of caps are ranked in chronological order of reaching the milestone.
Goalscorers with an equal number of goals are ranked by their goal average.
FIFA World Cup
|FIFA World Cup record|
|1930 to 1970||Did not enter|
|1974 to 2014||Did not qualify|
|2018||To be determined|
UEFA European Football Championship
|FIFA World Cup record|
|1960||Did not enter|
|1964||Did not qualify|
|1968||Did not enter|
|1972 to 2016||Did not qualify|
|2020||To be determined|
All-time team record
|Bosnia and Herzegovina||4||1||0||3||4||9||−5||25%|
|Central African Republic||1||1||0||0||2||1||+1||100%|
|Republic of Ireland||7||0||0||7||2||24||−22||0%|
|United Arab Emirates||2||0||2||0||1||1||0||0%|
- As of May 1, 2015
|Manager||Malta career||Played||Won||Drawn||Lost||Win %|
|Joe A. Griffiths||1957–1961||6||2||2||2||33.3|
- 1 match with Janos Bedl
- assisted by Carmel Busuttil
- managed the team on a one-off basis as caretaker manager
|Worst Ever Rank||173||July 2011|
|Best Ever Rank||66 (twice)||September 1994, September 1995|
|Current Rank||149 ||May 2015|
Head coach Pietro Ghedin
Ass Coach Silvio Vella
Goalkeepers Coach Charles Sciberras
Physical trainer Luca Pagani
- "History of the Malta Football Association". Malta Football Association. Retrieved 28 July 2011.
- "Malta's International 'A' Matches". Malta Football Association. Retrieved 2 September 2011.
- Brincat, Henry (15 October 2006). "Malta 2–1 Hungary". The Malta Independent.
- "Malta v England: Clockwatch". BBC. 3 June 2000. Retrieved 14 May 2014.
- "Malta 1-1 Northern Ireland". BBC. 17 August 2005. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
- "Malta to play Euro 2008 co-hosts Austria on 30 May". The Malta Independent. 22 December 2007.
- Huggins, Trevor (9 September 2007). "England notch easy win against Israel". Reuters UK.
- "Five-goal Mifsud inspires Malta to massive win". The Times of Malta. 27 March 2008.
- "Malta make ground from Swiss denial". fifa.com. 7 April 2011.
- "High-profile friendly a useful test - Buttigieg". The Times of Malta. 11 May 2010.
- "Malta-Maceddonia draw 1–1". The Times of Malta. 11 August 2010.
- Grech, Kevin (10 August 2011). "Mifsud the hero as Malta defeat Central African Republic". maltatoday.com.
- "Malta fires national coach John Buttigieg". ESPN. 26 October 2011.
- Roberto Mamrud. "Malta - Record International Players". RSSSF. Retrieved 2014-06-08.
- "FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking". fifa.com. Retrieved 21 September 2011.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Malta national football team.|
- Official site of the Malta Football Association
- RSSSF archive of results from 1957
- Reports for all matches of the Maltese national football team