Micallef rebuffed by Maltese football clubs: Joseph Muscat sole candidate for job

Former Labour MP Jean Claude Micallef said he would throw in his hat for headship of Premier clubs football association, but it seems Joseph Muscat will be MPFCA sole candidate

Jean Claude Micallef
Jean Claude Micallef

Joseph Muscat will be the sole candidate for a position of chairman of the Malta Professional Football Clubs Association, after the lobby revealed in a statement it had no intention of appointing a full-time CEO.

The statement was a rebuff of interest shown by former Labour MP Jean Claude Micallef on Friday, that he wanted to contest for the role of CEO of the MPFCA, in a probable run-off against former boss Joseph Muscat.

“It was agreed that the clubs are left free to approach other persons and submit further names for consideration. The clubs had until Friday to submit further names however no club came forward,” the association said.

MPFCA said that Micallef sent an email asking to be considered for the role of CEO but it remarked that at the stage there is no vacancy for the role or any other role.

Micallef, who served as a Labour MP under Muscat when he was elected in a casual election after the appointment of minister Helena Dalli to the European Commission, at first issued a critical post many interpreted as being against the nomination of Muscat.

Micallef said that he could not allow the reputation of Maltese clubs to be tarnished. “I took this step today, because I can never allow the reputation of Maltese clubs to be tarnished,” Micallef said, without making direct reference to Muscat.

He said that he believed the Premier should be detached from the Malta Football Association and appoint a chief executive to push forward the plans of the respective clubs. “Together we will move away from partisanship and parochialism and implement a professional system,” Micallef said. He said he had taken on board the confidence of members of the “football family” which he said he formed part of.

The association was formed last year to represent premier league clubs and is autonomous from the Malta Football Association. It comprises 14 clubs from Malta's top-tier football league.

Disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat is known to have received the backing of two-thirds of the clubs in the association this week. Some clubs, most prominently Valletta and Gudja, were not in favour, raising concerns over Muscat’s political baggage and controversial past.