Tomorrow, the University of Malta Futsal team will face Sliema Futsal in what is a deciding match for both teams. The Knights are in pole position to take the final spot in the Elite Division, as they sit a point ahead of all their rivals. Sliema are also in contention for this same spot and need a win at all costs to secure this place.
In light of the importance of the game, we caught up with the team coach Kyle Sultana and team captain Matthew Gatt for a brief on the build up to the match!
We first spoke to Coach Kyle Sultana;
Just how much does this game mean for the club?
“We are looking at this match the same way we have faced past opponents. Every match is equally important. They all carry 3 points regardless of the opposition. However I must admit that the timing of the match spices things up a little. We are underdogs but I believe we shall have an interesting encounter.”
What is the buildup like within the team before such a game?
“The build up from a tactical and technical point of view hasn’t changed. We try and prepare each match to the best of our ability week in week out. The players are working hard and are looking forward for the game. Luckily we will also be having some key players returning from injures so it will be great to have some selection headaches once again. What we are hoping for is to have more support than we normally do. The fans help us a lot. Their importance cannot be overstated, especially when they are in a noisy mood. They give us a big boost and it may also annoy the opposition.”
We then spoke to the team captain Matthew Gatt on how he sees things from inside the court;
How important is the support and atmosphere for you as players during a game?
“As players, the booming atmosphere created by the supporters from the stands gives us that extra boost that is needed to swing the match in our favour. Off the top of my head, I can recall two games this season, against Msida and Qormi, where a tight match was decided solely because of the roaring support given by our 6th man on the day. We feel blessed to have the best support in the local futsal scene!”
You will no doubt be leading the team out come Thursday; what is your message to the supporters for the day?
“My message for all those present is simple. On behalf of the team, I wish to thank you all for sticking by us throughout the season, through thick and thin. We’re going to go out there, and make sure we end up where we truly deserve, among Malta’s best!”