The Malta Independent 23 September 2019, Monday

Valletta and Balzan meet for the Super Cup

Henry Brincat Thursday, 13 December 2018, 12:00 Last update: about 10 months ago
Danilo Doncic, Valletta coach, left, and Marko Micovic, Balzan mentor, with the Super Cup
Danilo Doncic, Valletta coach, left, and Marko Micovic, Balzan mentor, with the Super Cup

Valletta and Balzan will be meeting this afternoon at the National Stadium in the match for the Super Cup (Kick-Off 3pm).

It is the annual match which usually pits together the previous season's champions and the Trophy winners. Balzan are taking part this year because Valletta won both the League title and the FA Trophy last season. So the Reds take part as League runners-up.

Addressing a news conference yesterday morning, both mentors, Danilo Doncic of Valletta and Marko Micovic of  Balzan, said this was an important annual fixture and both will be looking forward to see their teams triumph.

Doncic said he was eager to lead the side to another Cup win. "It would be nice to add another Cup to our list. This season we are in very good form. We have won 10 and drawn one of our last 11 matches. In the process we have scored 36 goals and suffered only two. I cannot expect any better from my boys," he remarked.

Despite having defenders Ryan Darmanin and Joe Zerafa not fully recovered from injuries, Doncic said this would be no problem. "In all probability I will have them on the bench from the start and will have Jonathan Caruana and Jean Borg as their replacements. These two players did well in the last two matches," he added.

Doncic explained: "The arrival of Mario Fontanella and Bojan Kaljevic gave added strength to the front line which was now working well in comparison with last season when we were somewhat lacking in scoring goals. This is also because we have changed our system - we are now playing more offensive football."

On the contrary, Micovic will have all players at his disposal. "We have no injuries and I can play with my best formation. Those injuries were probably the reasons why we missed out on some parts in the early part of the season.

"The team is now combining much better and I am sure we will give mighty Valletta a very strong challenge. They are favourites to win, but I also believe that my players will be able to rise to the occasion.

We all respect Valletta but we think we are also a complete team now. We consider this as another opportunity to win the first trophy for Balzan. I think my boys deserve to win a Cup."

Micovic also indicated that in the January transfer window, Balzan may strengthen the side. "Although we are not among the title favourites, the season is still far away from its end. We will be trying to boost the squad for the rest of the season," he said.

Balzan's Justin Grioli said he and his colleagues were looking forward to the match. "There is a Cup at stake and so we will be doing our utmost to win it. The fact that we will be playing against my former team does not change anything. I consider it as another match like all the others," he said.

Valletta midfielder Rowen Muscat reiterated that this was another important match. "We are always hungry for a win and this match will be no exception. We are a team always in the hunt for more successes," he said.

  • don't miss