Majority of Maltese Premier League clubs call for ‘immediate termination’ of football season

10 top-flight football clubs want Premier League to be terminated as prolonging COVID-19 stoppage threatens already precarious financial situation • Three other clubs want tournament to continue

A majority of Premier League football clubs have called for the immediate termination of the football season in a letter to Sports Parliamentary Secretary Clifton Grima.

The letter penned by the Malta Premier League Standing Committee cited the already precarious financial situation clubs are in as a result of COVID-19 restrictions on football and how they cannot wait any longer for a decision by the Malta Football Association.

The standing committee had already made its position known to the MFA.

According to the standing committee, in a vote taken by all Premier League clubs, 10 clubs voted in favour of terminating the league, while three clubs - Birkirkara, Gzira and Valletta - voted against. League leaders Floriana abstained.

The PLSC called for an end to Maltese top tier football, citing health issues and the dire financial situation clubs find themselves in as the main reasons.

The PLSC stated that clubs were concerned on the health and well-being of the players, technical staff and officials present, both at the stadiums and training grounds.

It also stated that the medical protocol prepared by the Malta FA Medical Commission will be financed by the clubs, adding a financial burden to an already difficult financial situation.

“The delay in deciding the way forward is already creating financial burdens particularity to accommodate and pay foreign players who cannot return home,” the standing committee told Grima.

Premier league trio ask PM for fair decision

In a separate letter to Prime Minister Robert Abela, Valletta, Gzira and Birkirkara called for a fair ruling on whether football can resume.

“We feel that with the diligence with which you and the government managed to lead the country during the pandemic in the past months, the effects of COVID-19 in Malta are currently under control, especially given that a number of restriction have been lifted and some activities restarted,” the letter said.

The clubs said that between them they employ over a 100 people, and generate a third of total expenditure in the league.

“Therefore, we are committed that the championship will continue so that this investment that we do year after year will have a final outcome that will be determined exclusively on a sporting merit, with the winners of the championship and the teams that will play in European competitions will be decided on the pitch and not in a meeting.”

The clubs also said that any decision should take in consideration any future repercussions.  

“Between today and three months’ time, there will be very little differences and therefore in case of a negative response, we expect to be given a detailed reply on the reasons in question and that every sporting activity will be suspended until a treatment is found to cure COVID-19,” the clubs said.

More in Football