Malta U-19s gearing up for Austria U-17 friendly

Wednesday, February 13, 2019, 7:52

The Malta Under-19 team are gearing up for a series of commitments as part of their build-up for their participation in the qualifying round of the 2019/2020 UEFA Under-19 Championship later this year.

This coming Friday, the Malta Under-19 side, led by coach Winston Muscat, face the Austria Under-17 team in a friendly match at the MFA Training Grounds, kicking off at 16.00.

Two days later, the Malta U-19s depart for Rome to take part in the annual Caput Mundi Tournament which gets under way on Monday. Their opponents in Group B are Kosovo, the England Schools Team and the Lazio Regional Selection.

Muscat positively remarked the fact that they will be playing four matches in the space of eight days as the players need these kind of games to gain more experience and develop in their career.

Following the participation in the last UEFA U-19 Championship qualifying round, a number of players from the Under-17 team have been promoted but there are also several players from the last squad who are still eligible to play at Under-19 level. Thus, injecting new blood into the squad but also relying on players who have been part of the set-up for some time and will therefore ensure continuity.

The Malta U-19 team gave a very good account of themselves in the last UEFA Under-19 qualifying round tournament, played in November at the Centenary Stadium.

Playing in Group 6, the Maltese team gained four points after holding Belgium to a 1-1 draw and beating Lithuana 2-1 in their final match. In their opening game, Malta suffered a narrow 1-0 defeat to group winners France.

Muscat is now preparing his team for another difficult tournament as, in November, the Malta Under-19 team will meet hosts Italy, Slovakia and Cyprus in Group 6.

Friday’s friendly match is against the Austria Under-17 team who have advanced to the Elite Round of the 2018/19 UEFA U-17 Championship.

Last month, the Malta Under-19s played two warm-up games against a youth and reserves selection of Scottish club St Mirren. After losing the first match 3-1, the Maltese youngsters held St Mirren to a 1-1 draw in the second meeting.

MALTA U-19 PROVISIONAL SQUAD

GOALKEEPERS
Amara Sylla (Birkirkara); Ryan Vella (Hibernians); Matthias Debono (Ħamrun Spartans); Dylan Ciappara (Mosta).

DEFENDERS
Sheldon Mizzi (Pietà Hotspurs); Liam McKay (Pietà Hotspurs); Andreas Vella (Hibernians); Ismael Borg (Lija Athletic); Glenn Attard (Birkirkara); Shaun Dimech (Valletta); Christian Gauci (San Ġwann); Isaac Galea (Floriana).

MIDFIELDERS
Jean Paul Attard (San Ġwann); Bradley Sciberras (Floriana); Jake Ghio (Pietà Hotspurs); Carlo Zammit Lonardelli (Birkirkara); Jamie Sixsmith (St Andrews); Matthew Portelli (Hibernians); Karl Mohnani (Melita).

FORWARDS
Russell Vella (Ħamrun Spartans); Alex Satariano (St Andrews); Ryan Tonna (Valletta); Paul Mbong (Birkirkara); Clyde Bouvet (Pietà Hotspurs); Sebastian Grech (Birkirkara); Jake Engerer (Cesena, Italy); Jordan Kelly (St Andrews).





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