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Malta FA focused on financial recovery – Bjorn Vassallo

Malta FA president Bjorn Vassallo said that strengthening the financial books of the Malta Football Association was one his main priorities for the coming months.

The Malta FA earlier this year reported an increase in the governing body’s deficit in its financial report due to COVID-19 and launched a recovery plan that would lead the association to a more stable situation in the near future.

“We are going to implement this plan without stopping major projects for the development of the game in collaboration with the Technical Centre, il-Fondazzjoni Inħobb il-Futbol and our member clubs through their academies and nurseries,” Vassallo said.

“In the same way we will not stop the investment in sporting facilities infrastructure in Ta’ Qali and football centres that are run by the clubs. Thanks to the government’s assistance, through public funds, we have started a project aimed at assisting the clubs to resurface their artificial pitches situated around Malta and Gozo.

“It is here that all the sporting activity is held so that children and adults in the community can integrate in an inclusive environment.

“The first indications after the mid-year review are showing an improvement in revenue but there was still an increase in expenditure related to expenses that cover the operation of the championship organised by the MFA as well as financial guarantees in the form of subsidies that the MFA has with clubs and member associations in regards of the operation of the game.”

Vassallo said that in the other sectors, the estimated expenditure remained on the same levels and that shows the good diligence shown by the association.

“If it wasn’t the case, we would not be able to sign a new refinancing plan that will permit more flexibility to the association on payments related to infrastructural investment on sporting facilities of the past as well as other loans that the MFA took up,” he said.

“But that doesn’t mean that we have reached our desired objectives.

“ We need to remain focused to reach the goals set and approved by the General Assembly of a few months ago.”

Vassallo appealed to the clubs to continue to act diligently and adopt plans to ensure they are safeguarded financially and ensure they are in a strong position should persons who took rash decisions suddenly disappear and leave club administrations having to contend with difficult situations.

“Where there is no sustainability, there cannot be huge expenditure that is not detailed on a feasible financial plan as the risks today are huge and if the performances and the results are not attained then the prize money will go to someone else and you have to see how your club will survive.”

Vassallo said that the association will continue to assist the clubs and the member associations with various schemes that will provide them with incentive funds that will give an added value to the game,

terms of administration and the technical sector, that will reflect the strategy of the association.

“Football has always been a catalyst in reforms and new ideas, and we have to recognise that the last three years were not easy,” Vassallo said.

“But now there is no room for further delay and what sport was promised, we as MFA, we are doing everything we can to ensure that it is done in respect to legislature and rules.

“This is the moment where the government has approved amendments in the subsidiary law that regulates the process of the commercialisation of sports facilities.

“Our commitment remains there to ensure that football is elevated to the highest levels possible.”

Elections

Six members have been elected to the Executive Board of the Malta FA for season 2022-23.

The new officials have been nominated to serve on the association’s top executive body by their respective grouping.

Michael Valenzia will fill the seat relinquished by Dione Borg in representation of Premier League clubs while Joseph Gauci, Dr Peter Fenech and Matthew Naudi succeed Godfrey Borg, Joe Sammut and Stefan Vella in the Challenge League.

Godfrey Borg will keep his seat on the Executive Board, however, as he has been nominated to represent the National Amateur League, taking over from Dr Cory Greenland.

Pio Vassallo is filling the seat previously held by Mark Borg for Futsal and Beach Soccer.

Simon Spiteri will replace Kenneth Costantino as representative for women’s football.

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