Football icon Edward Aquilina passes away aged 75

Aquilina enjoyed a glittering career on the field as a footballer, and off the field as a coach

Photo: Malta Football Association
Photo: Malta Football Association

Football icon Edward Aquilina has passed away aged 75, having enjoyed a glittering career on the field as a footballer, and off the field as a coach.

Aquilina's senior career kicked off in season 1960/61 with Melita FC in the Third Division. In the next season, Aquilina went on to play for Sliema Wanderers, and spent a total 15 seasons with the club in two different spells.

Between 1966 and 1976, Aquilina played 12 times for the Maltese international team. In. his debut game, Aquilina scored the winning goal in a friendly match against Libya (1-0) at Manoel Island.

After having made 278 senior domestic career appearances, Aquilina hung up his boots in 1979, having scored 39 goals throughout his career.

Aquilina went on to take up coaching, initially with Sliema Wanderers FC in Premier Division. He coached Qormi FC, Senglea Athletic FC, and Marsa FC in the First Division, and eventually found great success with Valletta FC between 1994 and 1998.

He returned to Sliema Wanderers FC in 2002, having stayed with the team until 2006. In total, Aquilina coached 243 games in the Premier Division.

In a statement on Sunday, the Malta Football Association extended its condolences to Aquilina's family and friends. This sentiment was shared by Sliema Wanderers FC and Valletta FC in separate Facebook posts.

Valletta FC saddened by death of former Coach Edward Aquilina Valletta Football Club express it’s sadnesses at the...

Posted by Valletta Football Club on Sunday, June 6, 2021

We are deeply saddened to hear about the passing away of our former player and coach Edward Aquilina. Edward won several...

Posted by Sliema Wanderers FC on Sunday, June 6, 2021