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Youth FA postpone start of competitions due to COVID-19

New format for National Amateur League

The start of the 2020-21 Youth League competitions has been postponed to a later date due to the increase in COVID-19 cases in Malta.

Reports said this week that several U-19 players had tested positive for COVID-19 while the Malta U-19 selection has been put through a mandatory two-week quarantine after returning from a short trip to Italy where they played friendly matches against Juventus and Monza.

“Due to the increasing difficulties caused by the COVID-19 situation, the Malta FA Bureau has decided to postpone the start of the 2020/21 National Youth Leagues to a late date which will be communicated in due course,” the Malta Football Association said. 

“The Women’s Under-19 and Under-15 leagues are also being postponed.”

The Youth FA also issued a statement to confirm the postponement of its competitions and said that the well-being and safety of the players and all those involved in youth football was the priority.

“Due to the increasing number of positive COVID-19 cases affecting players and staff members at nursery level, and following consultations with the Malta Football Association, the Youth FA has decided to postpone the 2020/21 championships to a later date which will be communicated in due course.

“This decision has been taken in the interest of public health with the well-being and safety of the players and all those involved in youth football the overriding priority.

“The postponement of the U-15 and U-17 championships is also in line with the decision announced by the Malta FA today to delay the start of the 2020/21 National Youth Leagues and the postponement of the Women’s Under-19 and Under-15 championships.”

National Amateur League format

The Malta FA also announced that it was changing the format of the BOV National Amateur League and the championship, which brings together teams who were previously in the second and third division of Maltese football, will now be played over two rounds instead of three.

“The 2020/21 BOV National Amateur League will be played over two rounds instead of three in view of the challenges caused by the fluid COVID-19 situation,” the Malta FA said.

“The decision has been taken at a meeting of the Malta Football Association Bureau following consultations with the Executive Committee members representing clubs in this division as well as the Exco officials representing member clubs overall.

“The shortened duration of the championship is intended to minimise the disruption caused by the inevitable rescheduling of matches.

“In the meantime, Luqa St Andrews’ opening-day Group B fixture against Siġġiewi on Sunday, October 17, 2020, has been postponed to a later date.”

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