Maltese Premier League
The Maltese Premier League, known as BOV Premier League for sponsorship reasons, is the top level league for football in Malta. The league was first competed in 1909, in the Maltese football system, there are three divisions under the Premier League, they are, the First, Second and Third divisions. At the end of the 2012–13 season, UEFA ranked the Maltese Premier League 44th out of 53 members in their coefficient calculation for UEFA club competitions, each team plays each other three times. During every season, which is held between August and May, the 12 teams play against each other twice, once each club had played 22 matches, each team has their points total halved. Each team then plays each other once more after the halving of the points, the Premier League Standing Committee is a body composed of the Premier League club presidents who represent their club on a board. These do not have powers but are a formal body that has official influence with regards to rules, regulations. From time to time the committee makes proposals to the respective, Malta rose four places in the UEFA League Coefficient in 2010–11 and a further 3 in 2011–12, as a result they gained a slot in UEFA club competitions, effective from the 2012–13 season. Prior to the 2012–13, the Maltese champions entered the first qualifying round of the Champions league, Malta Football Association League321. com – Maltese football league tables, records & statistics database. Malta – List of Champions and Runners-Up, RSSSF. com
Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a team sport played between two teams of eleven players with a spherical ball. It is played by 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies making it the worlds most popular sport, the game is played on a rectangular field with a goal at each end. The object of the game is to score by getting the ball into the opposing goal, players are not allowed to touch the ball with their hands or arms while it is in play, unless they are goalkeepers. Other players mainly use their feet to strike or pass the ball, the team that scores the most goals by the end of the match wins. If the score is level at the end of the game, the Laws of the Game were originally codified in England by The Football Association in 1863. Association football is governed internationally by the International Federation of Association Football, the first written reference to the inflated ball used in the game was in the mid-14th century, Þe heued fro þe body went, Als it were a foteballe. The Online Etymology Dictionary states that the word soccer was split off in 1863, according to Partha Mazumdar, the term soccer originated in England, first appearing in the 1880s as an Oxford -er abbreviation of the word association. Within the English-speaking world, association football is now usually called football in the United Kingdom and mainly soccer in Canada and the United States. People in Australia, Ireland, South Africa and New Zealand use either or both terms, although national associations in Australia and New Zealand now primarily use football for the formal name. According to FIFA, the Chinese competitive game cuju is the earliest form of football for which there is scientific evidence, cuju players could use any part of the body apart from hands and the intent was kicking a ball through an opening into a net. It was remarkably similar to football, though similarities to rugby occurred. During the Han Dynasty, cuju games were standardised and rules were established, phaininda and episkyros were Greek ball games. An image of an episkyros player depicted in low relief on a vase at the National Archaeological Museum of Athens appears on the UEFA European Championship Cup, athenaeus, writing in 228 AD, referenced the Roman ball game harpastum. Phaininda, episkyros and harpastum were played involving hands and violence and they all appear to have resembled rugby football, wrestling and volleyball more than what is recognizable as modern football. As with pre-codified mob football, the antecedent of all football codes. Non-competitive games included kemari in Japan, chuk-guk in Korea and woggabaliri in Australia, Association football in itself does not have a classical history. Notwithstanding any similarities to other games played around the world FIFA have recognised that no historical connection exists with any game played in antiquity outside Europe. The modern rules of football are based on the mid-19th century efforts to standardise the widely varying forms of football played in the public schools of England
Valletta Football Club is a Maltese football club based in Valletta, the capital city of Malta. Valletta Football Club was founded in 1943, as a merger of Valletta Prestons, Valletta St. Pauls, Valletta also have a futsal team which participates in Maltas top futsal league. There is no evidence on when Valletta F. C. started. The foundation of Valletta F. C. was laid with the creation of the Valletta United team, Valletta United was known as the team of the square since the club was located in St. Georges Square. Valletta United represented the city from 1904 to 1932, the city of Valletta in Malta has a long footballing history, between 1886 and 1919 at some point or another, around fourteen teams had competed representing the city. Amongst these early teams included the popular Boys Empire League, Valletta College, St. Georges Square, Dockyard Albion, a very important early step in the history of the current club, was the founding of Valletta United Football Club in 1903 by local youngsters. Despite their enthusiasm for the game which had brought to the island by the British. They cut their white trousers into long shorts and dyed their shirts into that of the colours for their uniforms. The Ditch at Porte des Bombes, which itself had been the scene of the first ever recorded Maltese football match in 1886, was chosen to host Valletta Uniteds first match on 9 January 1904. United faced off against a team from the Collegiate School and won 1–0 with a strike from a forward named L. Agius. During their last ever season, Valletta United upset the two clubs in Malta of the time, by winning the Maltese League in 1931–32. Although Sliema and Floriana dominated the scene in those times, by winning these trophies it was Valletta United that started to break into this monopoly. Valletta United were very active in the Championship of the first division, during the period that Valletta United played within the Malta Football Association, Valletta United won the championship in 1931–32. However, for reason in the following season, Valletta United disappeared from the football scene and thus the monopoly of Sliema. Valletta United was the not the team from the city that played in the highest Division of the M. F. A. In the 1925–26 and the 1926–27 seasons there were Valletta Rovers who played in the highest Division of the M. F. A, then in the season 1937–38 and 1938–39 there was Valletta City. In 1996–97 Valletta F. C. won all five competitions that the Maltese football offers and this was done by succeeding to win the Premier League, Rothmans Trophy, Super Five Cup, Lowenbrau Cup and Super Cup. In the season 2000–01, Valletta F. C. succeeded in breaking their own record from 1996–97 and this time they won the six competitions offered by the M. F. A
Lija Athletic F.C.
Lija Athletic Football Club is a football team originating from the village of Lija, Malta. The present club was founded in 1949 and has competed in the Maltese Premier League three times. Although the first team in Lija is believed to have formed in the 1930s. Lija Amateurs were founded in 1944 and in season 1944–45, they part in the Second Division. The team was disbanded three years. In 1948–49, the present club, Lija Athletic were founded, the club joined the MFA and played in Division Three. The team was gaining momentum, until during a Third Division league match against Qormi Youngsters in March 1957, the MFA suspended the club from all football activities. However this decision was reviewed and the team was back in 1958, the club tasted its first success when winning the Third Division Championship in 1962–63. The team was relegated in 1968–69 and it took Lija Athletic nine years to regain promotion to the Second Division, the introduction of the Premier Division by the MFA in 1980 meant that all clubs were promoted by one division. Lija Athletic found themselves in the First Division, after a rather good performance during the first season in Division One, Lija were relegated in 1981–82. The club won promotion to the First Division in 1987–88, in 1990–91, Lija Athletic were relegated to the Third Division. In the Premier League for the first time ever, during the season of 1996–97, Lija Athletic had a hard time with the big guns of local football. Once again the Premier Division challenge was too much, and with 3 wins,2 draws and 19 lost games, Lija finished in last place. In 2005–06 Lija Athletic continued the habit of leaving their division one year. In 2006–07 the team obtained a position in mid-table, finishing 7th place, in spite of a poorer record, the team climbed to 6th place the following season. In 2008–09 Lija Athletic were able to challenge for promotion, although they had to settle for third place behind Melita FC and local rivals Balzan Youths, the 2009–10 season saw Lija Athletic strengthening the squad with several experienced players and some talented youngsters. Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality
Naxxar Lions F.C.
Naxxar Lions Football Club are a football club from the village of Naxxar in northern Malta. Naxxar Lions Football Club is a club from the town of Naxxar in the northern part of Malta. Founded in 1920, it was the first football club in the north of Malta, the club had a very positive period in the 1940s and after some years languishing in the lower divisions, the club had several years of glory. Michael Zammit Tabona was appointed president in the 1980s, establishing the club as one of the best on the island, playing for several years in the Maltese Premier Division. After being relegated from the top league at the beginning of the new century, in the 2012–13 season Naxxar Lions gained promotion to the Maltese Premier League. Naxxar are currently playing in the Maltese First Division, Naxxar Lions also have a futsal team. Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality
Qormi Football Club is a Maltese football club from the city of Qormi, that currently plays in the Maltese First Division. Qormi Football Club was founded in 1961 after the amalgamation of Qormi Youngsters and Qormi United, the club thus celebrated the 50th anniversary in 2011. Qormi Football Club is affiliated with the Malta Football Association which is the main body in Malta. The Qormi FC Youth Nursery is a sub-committee of Qormi FC, Qormi Football Grounds are situated in Valletta Road, Qormi and the amenities includes pitches, a conference hall, fitness centre, bar and the Qormi FC Youth Nursery Headquarters. Qormis official colours are Yellow and Black, qormis biggest arch rivals are Zebbug Rangers from neighbouring town of Zebbug, Malta. The club has spent some of its seasons yo-yo-ing from one division to another, season 2007–08 was the best ever season in the clubs recent history. Qormi clinched a second finish in the Maltese First Division, following a hardly fought play-off penalty win against Mosta. Season 2008–09 will be the first season that Qormi will spend in the highest echelons of Maltese football since the old First Division was renamed the Premier League. To prepare for their first Maltese Premier League campaign, Qormi brought in ten new signings, the team performed well in pre-season friendlies. In a press release, the clubs committee expressed its aim to stay in top flight, nevertheless, Qormi still struggled against relegation like most newly promoted teams in the Premier League. Promotion was only achieved on the very last day of the league, season 2009–10 saw Qormi achieving a historical stint in the Maltese top-flight, as well as in the FA Trophy. The success was aided with arguably the best signing in the clubs history. Camilo finished top scorer in the league with 24 goals in 22 appearances where Qormi finished in the third place, Qormi then had to play a decider match to determine the taker of the Europa League spot for the next season, a match which Qormi lost to Sliema 0–2. Qormi also could have achieved a spot through the cup, however, albeit making it to the final, after the departure of Camilo and other players, as well as coaches Jesmond Zerafa and Vincent Carbonaro, Qormi faced a difficult season the year after. Also notable was the change in staff at the beginning of the season. During the season, Azzopardi utilised various youth players coming up from the Youth Nursery, Qormi kept struggling season after season, with the occasional fluke in the Maltese FA Trophy. Qormi reached the three times, all as runners-up, in 2009–10, 2011–12 and 2012–13. The yellow-blacks celebrated their 50th anniversary during season 2011–12, the club kept on struggling to avoid relegation, while enthusiasm for football in the city of Qormi began to wane
Maltese First Division
The Maltese First Division is the second-highest division in Maltese football, behind the Maltese Premier League and above the Maltese Second Division. The league has been running for many years,14 teams take part in the league. The top two teams are promoted to the Maltese Premier League, whilst the three lowest-finishing teams are relegated to the Maltese Second Division, the third place team plays the tenth place team in the Maltese Premier League in a play-off game for promotion. Due to the expansion of the Maltese Premier League starting from the season 2017/18,3 teams will be promoted while the 4th placed team will face the play-off game, on the other hand, only 2 teams will get relegated to the Maltese Second Division. On January 13,2011, the Malta Football Association decided to expand the league to 12 teams as from season 2011–12, the top two placed teams will get promoted to the Maltese Premier League while the 3rd best team will face the play-off. As from the 2017/18 Maltese First Division, only 2 teams will be relegated automatically, League at Maltafootball. com League at soccerway. com League321. com - Maltese football league tables, records & statistics database
Tarxien Rainbows F.C.
Tarxien Rainbows Football Club are a football team from Tarxien, a town in southern Malta. They currently play in the Maltese Premier League, the club were founded as Little Rainbows in 1944, and participated in the Maltese Premier League for the 2009–10 season. The club was promoted to the best division after finishing as champions in the Maltese First Division in 2007–08, in 2008–09 the club finished level on points with fellow strugglers Hamrun Spartans and Msida St. Joseph. Hamrun had the worst head to record and were relegated. In 2009–10 the season was different for the Rainbows as they managed to place 5th in the table. In season 2009–10, Tarxien Rainbows placed fifth in the pool above eternal rivals Hibernians. As well, in season 2009–10 Tarxien Rainbows won the three times in a row making it a historical season. As well, in the same season Tarxien reached the semi-final of the F. A, Trophy and the 100th Anniversary Cup. In the 2010–11 season Tarxien Rainbows finished in the 5th place in the championship pool and it was a good season, finishing the First Round in the 2nd place. They had two derbies to play because their rivals Hibernians finished in the pool, one winning it and made it four derby wins in one year. In the same season they reached the Semi-Final of the U*BET FA Trophy, in the 2011–12 season Tarxien Rainbows avoided relegation with a few games remaining before the end of the season. Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. Noel Coleiro Patrick Curmi Danilo Dončić Clive Mizzi Jacques Scerri Brian Testaferrata Official website MaltaFootball Club Profile SoccerWay Club Profile
Zejtun Corinthians F.C.
Zejtun Corinthians Football Club is a Maltese football club from the town of Zejtun, which currently plays in the Maltese Second Division. Founded in 1943, the club has rarely ventured higher than the divisions of Maltese football. After World War II, the game of football in Malta was re-enacted, like other local villages and towns, the Zejtun population eagerly set up a football team, and in 1943 the name of Zejtun Corinthians first emerged. The team’s name was chosen from a team taking part in the English league. The first committee members of the club consisted of Joseph Cassar, Joseph Galea, Fortunato Zerafa. The official colours of the Club’s kit are navy blue and sky blue stripes and this colour scheme was first inspired by that of Sliema Wanderers, since at the time many ‘Zwieten’ supported Sliema Wanderers. The first decade proved to be a start for Zejtun Corinthians. The players forming part of the team were either Zejtun locals. In the first seasons, Zejtun Corinthians placed in the divisions of the league. However, thanks to the hard work, Zejtun Corinthians managed to secure honours in the leagues organized by the Malta Football Association in a couple of years. Since then, the team reached its highest placing in the 60’s when a rank in the Second Division was meritoriously secured and this was the golden era of Zejtun Corinthians with players like Louis Bonello, Reginald Vella James, Anthony Spiteri, Joe Abela and goalkeeper John Formosa. During the 1959/60 season, Zejtun Corinthians managed to win the double, placing first in the Maltese Third Division classification, during the 70’s the team also had its share of successes. After winning the Maltese Third Division multiple times, Zejtun Corinthians reached the Maltese Second Division, in the 1980, the Malta Football Association reorganized the National Leagues and for the first time introduced the Maltese Premier League. In the 1981/82, and the three consecutive seasons, 1986/87, 1987/88, and 1988/89, Zejtun Corinthians proudly played in the Maltese First Division. In the early 90’s history repeated itself, in the season 1991/92 Zejtun Corinthians managed to win the Maltese Third Division championship with a win in a derby decider over Marsaxlokk. In the season 2002/03 Zejtun Corinthians were declared Champions for the Maltese Third Division, the Zejtun Corinthians F. C is currently competing in the Second Division in Malta. Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. Joe Falzon appointed Zejtun Corinthians coach on maltafootball. com
Balzan Football Club is a Maltese football club from the village of Balzan, which currently plays in the Maltese Premier League. The Club was founded in 1937, and has played football once before in 2003–04. As of 24 June 2016 Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. The Clubs Administration Building ‘Solerville’ is located at Main Street, Balzan, a bar and garden restaurant on the ground floor are open to the public. The Club’s modern training facilities, located at Robert Mifsud Bonnici Street, Lija, include a clubhouse, the clubhouse includes a conference room, a bar and a gymnasium and was officially opened on 13 March 2011. From September 2015, Balzan F. C. teams also commenced training at St Aloysius College Ground, notes 1Q, First qualifying round Official website Official Facebook page Official Academy Facebook page
Balzan is small town in the Central Region of Malta, one of the so-called three villages, together with Attard and Lija. The village originally consisted of a group of dwellings and farms but eventually grew. As of March 2014 the town has 3,958 inhabitants, in Malta, many village names are identical to certain family names, as in Attard and Lija. It is believed by some, therefore, that the village inherited its name from a family whose name was Balzan. Balsan literally means tax collector or contributions collector, the tax collector must have been from the same parish, at the time forming part of Birkirkara. The parish church, built in the century, is dedicated to the Annunciation of Our Lady. The church is built in the form of a Latin cross, has one belfry, the church is built on a Tuscan style from the outside and Doric on the inside. The statue used in the village feast celebrated on the 2nd week of July, is carved in wood by Salvatore Dimech and shows our lady and Gabriel the Archangel. The parish also celebrates the feast of St. Valentine, which gave the name to the radio station, Radio Valentine. As with Attard and Lija, Balzan is a sought after location and popular with the middle, the population has increased due to large-scale development taking place, largely in the form of apartment blocks replacing villas and their gardens. However, this is occurring on the outskirts of the village. The majority of Balzan is an Urban Conservation Area
Victor Tedesco Stadium
The Victor Tedesco Stadium is a stadium in Ħamrun, Malta. It has a capacity of 6,000, with 1,800 seated and it is the home ground of Maltese football club Hamrun Spartans, who currently play in the Maltese Premier League. It is used for matches from the Maltese Premier League, the Maltese First Division and it is also used by all the Hamrun Spartans teams from the youth teams to the senior teams for training. The stadium also has a bar, underground dressing rooms, some offices, on 4 June 2010 rugby league was played at the ground. The Malta Knights came from 10–0 down midway through the first half to defeat Norway, 30–20 to win the Rugby League European Federation Bowl
Birkirkara Football Club is a football club based in the town of Birkirkara, the largest town on the island of Malta. The club was formed in 1950, following the amalgamation of Birkirkara United, Birkirkara currently play in the Maltese Premier League, which it has won on four occasions, most recently in the 2012–13 season. Birkirkara also has a Futsal team under the same name, Birkirkara is one of the founding members of the European Club Association. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality, note 1, match forfeited, result set to 0–3 by UEFA
Birkirkara is a town in the central region of Malta. It is the most populous on the island, with 22,247 inhabitants as of March 2014, the city consists of four autonomous parishes, Saint Helen, Saint Joseph, Our Lady of Mount Carmel and Saint Mary. It is also home to St Aloysius College, the citys motto is In hoc signo vinces, and its coat of arms is a plain red cross, surmounted by a crown. Birkirkara means cold water or running water and this is attributed to the valley in the town. Originally, the name was written as Birchirchara, as influenced by the Italian alphabet which excludes the use of the letter k and it is often abbreviated as Bkara/Kara. Birkirkara is situated in a valley, which is from where its name is derived and it is in fact known for flooding on heavy stormy days. The area has also received embellishment works from time to time, there are many places of interest in Birkirkara, amongst them the Old Railway Station which is today located within a public garden. Trains were used as means of transportation across the island until the Railways closure happened in 1931, other town features include the Wignacourt Aqueduct built in the 17th Century, and St Helens Basilica, housing Maltas largest church bell. Various parishes and suburbs developed out of Birkirkara over the years, including Sliema, St. Julians, Msida, Ħamrun in the 19th century and Santa Venera in the early 20th century. In more recent years, San Ġwann and the hamlet of Ta l-Ibraġ hived off Birkirkara to form part of the new parish and locality of Swieqi in 1993. Birkirkaras main religious feast is that of St Helen which is celebrated on 18 August if it falls on a Sunday, the main event of the celebration is a procession with a large wooden statue carved by the Maltese master-sculptor Salvu Psaila. Notably, this is the procession on the island carried out in the morning. The procession leaves the basilica at exactly 8,00 a. m. the statue is lifted to shoulder-height by a group of townsmen and is carried through the main streets of the town. Birkirkara has grown into an important commercial centre as well as a populated residential area. As a busy town, Birkirkara has an incidence of car accidents. In Birkirkara, the temperature varies from 10.3 to 30.7 °C during a year, Joseph the Worker Parish Church, Triq il-Bwieraq St. Helens Parish Church, Triq is-Santwarju St. Casolani Da Vinci Hospital, Triq Kan. K. The latter is however definitely outshined by Birkirkara F. C. led by Adrian Delia, Birkirkara also eliminated Heart of Midlothian in the 2016-17 UEFA Europa League. Birkirkara Football Club Birkirkara Ultras 1997 Birkirkara St. Joseph Sports Club
National Stadium, Ta' Qali
Ta Qali National Stadium is the national stadium of Malta, and is the home stadium of the Malta national football team. It stages most Maltese Premier League and cup matches, as well as international matches, the stadium seats approximately 17,000 people and it is the largest stadium in the country. The new stadium was inaugurated in December 1981, and for the first time ever, top Division League matches, over the years the association has kept the pace in improving its facilities with the aim of offering top quality facilities to its members and fans. Also there was the re-building of the 5, 000-seater East Stand and this place houses the Malta F. A. There is also a garage underneath, catering areas and ample parking space around the stadium, all facilities at the stadium are easily accessible by means of several entrances. In 2016, the Maltese Football Association announced a €1.5 million project to replace the old grass surface with a modern hybrid grass surface, the project was conducted by SIS Pitches who are renowned for other works such as the Vodafone Arena and iPro Stadium. The expenses were financed by UEFA and FIFA, with the rest being covered by the MFA. Ta’ Qali National Stadium at StadiumDB. com
Floriana Football Club is a semi-professional Maltese football club in the town of Floriana that currently plays in the Maltese Premier League. It has one of the largest fan followings on the islands and remains the most successful club in Maltese history, in all, Floriana F. C. has won 25 national leagues and 19 FA Trophies. It is also the team from Malta to have qualified from the qualifying rounds to the first round proper of the UEFA Champions League. Floriana Football Club was founded in 1894 with the inauguration of the football ground officiated by Queen Alexandra, the site was a cricket ground from 1890 till its conversion project. Together with St. Georges FC, is one of the two oldest clubs in Malta, during that period, football in Malta was introduced by the British Servicemen who were stationed on the island, which was then a colony of the British Empire. The club is affiliated to the Malta Football Association which in turn is a member of both UEFA and FIFA, Floriana Football Club has won the major Maltese League championship 25 times and the U*BET FA TROPHY19 times. Floriana also have a team which participates in Maltas top futsal league. Football was introduced in Malta at the end of the 19th Century by the British troops stationed on the island, at that time Malta formed part of the British Empire and, the Island was the base of British forces in the heart of the Mediterranean. The forces barracks, which were located around the island of Malta, enjoyed large areas that were used as parade grounds, training areas. The sports practised by the soldiers were mainly cricket, hockey, the British forces in Malta were mainly stationed in Floriana, Cospicua, Mtarfa, Marsa and Sliema. The locals who were influenced by the soldiers stationed in the area were introduced to these sporting activities, the most popular sport amongst the residents of Floriana was football, however some also practised cricket and hockey. Floriana still has its club, carrying the name Floriana Young Stars Hockey Club. Between 1894 and 1905 the clubs colours were green/red quartered shirts, black shorts with green, the official colours of the club as we know them today, green and white vertical striped shirts, white shorts and green/white horizontal striped socks, were introduced in 1905. At that time the Royal Dublin Fusiliers were stationed in Floriana, during that year, three friendly matches were held between this regiment and FFC. At the end of the match both teams exchanged their shirts and later the FFC changed their official colours to their green. The regiment left the Island for India in that same year, the ties between Floriana and the Royal Dublin Fusiliers were so strong that the people hailing from Floriana were nicknamed after the Irish, Tal-Irish. The clubs mascot is the lion, which features prominently on the clubs badge since 1936 together with the Latin motto Ex Ludis Virtus, in this regard the clubs badge represents the fierceness of the lion together with the virtues of sportsmanship. The lion was chosen as the mascot for two general reasons attributed to history of Floriana
Floriana, also known by its title Borgo Vilhena, is a fortified town in the South Eastern Region area of Malta, just outside the capital city Valletta. It has a population of 2,205 as of March 2014, Floriana is named after Pietro Paolo Floriani, an Italian military engineer who designed the Floriana Lines, the line of fortifications surrounding the town. In Maltese, the town is called Il-Floriana by the local council, however, it is popularly known as Il-Furjana, and the latter is regarded as the official name by the National Council for the Maltese Language. The towns original name was Borgo Vilhena after Grand Master António Manoel de Vilhena. The name Borgo Vilhena is now used as a title, just like Valletta has the title Città Umilissima, the origins of Floriana go back to 1636, when construction of the Floriana Lines commenced. The line of fortifications was built outside the fortifications of Valletta as a defensive line for the capital city. The lines were named after Pietro Paolo Floriani, the Italian military engineer who had designed them, the fortifications were partially defensible by 1640, but construction and modifications continued throughout the 17th and 18th century, being fully completed in the 1720s. The area between the Floriana Lines and the Valletta Land Front began to be built up in 1724, the Assoċjazzjoni Sport Floriana, or Floriana Sports Association, sponsors a number of sports in the town, as well as hosting the Floriana Supporters Club. Saint Publius is one of the saints of Malta and also the patron saint of Floriana. The Archipresbyteral Church of Floriana is dedicated to Saint Publius, traditionally acclaimed as the first Bishop of Malta, according to tradition, Publius received the Apostle Paul during his shipwreck on the island as recounted in the Acts of the Apostles 28, 1–10. Being Maltese makes St. Publius the first Maltese saint and this explains the devotion which St. Publius enjoys around Malta, one finds various chapels and statues scattered around the Maltese Islands which date back to hundreds of years. Pjazza Emm. S. Tonna Pjazza San Kalċidonju Triq il-Konservatorju Triq il-Mall Triq il-Miratur Triq is-Suq Triq l-Argotti Triq l-Iljun Triq l-Isqof M. The National Audit Office along with the Department of Contracts and the Malta Environment, the Floriana Local Council was established in 1993 along with Maltas other local councils to administer the town. It is located at Emmanuel S. Tonna Square, the annual Isle of MTV music festival has been held in Floriana since 2007. Vilhena Band Club was founded in 1874, the first musical director of the band was Mro. Giuseppe Borg, and the first president of the Society was Baldassare Portanier, kevin Borg a Maltese singer and Swedish Idol 2008 winner was born in the town. He moved to Arvidsjaur, Sweden in late 2007 to live with his girlfriend and was soon cast as a contestant on the Swedish Idol series, St. Publius Parish Church, Triq Sarria Floriana Local Council, Pjazza Emanuel S
Hamrun Spartans F.C.
Hamrun Spartans Football Club is the football team of Ħamrun on Malta. Since being founded in 1907, the Hamrun Spartans have won a total of seven league championships and they have also been runners-up eleven times. One of the stalwarts in the history, Stefan Sultana, has scored a total of 252 goals in his career. Hamrun Spartans were founded in 1907, by season 1913–14, Hamrun Spartans were already an established team on the local scene winning the title during that season thanks to a better goal-average than St. Georges. Their second League success came four years later when they finished again in joint top-spot with St. Georges and this time the Spartans were crowned Champions of Malta by beating them in a play-off. Hamruns top player at that time was Gejtu Psaila, known as il-Hacca, in the 1920s and 1930s, the club went through a difficult period as most Hamrun players left to join other clubs. A new team, Hamrun Liberty was formed and in just a couple of years, on their return to the First Division in 1946–47, the club changed its name to Hamrun Spartans. They were soon a hit as they won the Johnnie Walker Championship Trophy and they won the Cassar Cup again in 1948–49 season. For four times between 1947 and 1952 they were four times runners-up, the team started dwindling down in the 60s until they were relegated in the season 1969–70. After returning to the First Division, they were relegated again in 1973–74. However, after two years in the Second Division, they were back in the First Division, on the 75th anniversary, in season 1982–83, the club was back at the top winning the title after an absence of 36 years. Hamrun also managed to win the FA Trophy during that season and that was the beginning of an era under the guide of president Victor Tedesco. The team was strengthened with top players like Gigi Salerno, Raymond and George Xuereb, Edwin Farrugia, Raymond Vella, Joe Brincat and Carlo Seychell. The Spartans set a new record being the first local team to win both the home and away legs in a UEFA competition after beating Ballymena of Northern Ireland. In a decade, Hamrun managed to win three titles, three FA Trophies, the Super Cup and Euro Cup twice each. After such successful campaigns, the Spartans faced financial difficulties, the team had to transfer its best players until finally they were relegated to the First Division in 1998–99. After one year, they were promoted back to the Premier League after winning the Division 1 title, the last four seasons were years of ups-and-downs. The team won the Maltese First Division in 2006–07 and this season was also a great success to its supporters after winning the Malta Best Support Award
Hibernians Football Club is a Maltese association football club based in the town of Paola. The club played one season in 1922 as Constitutionals FC, representing the pro-British Constitutional Party and they started up again in the 1927–28 season and became a top amateur side, winning the Amateur League in 1930–31. Meanwhile, the Constitutional Party had upset the Catholic Church so much that in May 1930 it was made a sin for Catholics to vote for the party. The football club changed its name a year later to Hibernians Football Club as a nod to Hibernian and they won their first match as Hibernians 2–1, against HMS Antelope in October 1931. They had to wait for a place to become available in the professional league and they have stayed in the top division ever since. Hibernians faced a period of decline followed the success of the 1980s to the end of the decade. Hibernians also have a team, which plays in Maltas top futsal league. The clubs home ground is Hibernians Stadium, a stadium in Paola. The squad list includes only the nationality of each player. Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. Robert Gatt Edmond Lufi Mark Miller Michael Woods Branko Nišević mark miller A womens team plays in the Womens Maltese First Division, the team is the national record champion with twelve titles. The most recent one was won in 2016
Paola is a town in the South Eastern Region of Malta, with a population of 7,864 people. It is named after Grand Master Antoine de Paule, who laid the stone in 1626. To encourage migration to Paola, de Paule gave indemnity to the debts of the families who moved there and this account was recorded for the first time by de Solidanis in the eighteenth century. He says that in 1750 the village was not yet a parish on its own, Paola became almost deserted due to a local disease, but became increasingly habitable after intervention by captain Hunn. Paola is renowned for the Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum, its parish church, its beautiful square with shopping centres, the Good Friday procession. There are two churches, one dedicated to Christ the King and the other to Our Lady of Lourdes. The feast of Christ the King is celebrated on the fourth Sunday of July, the parish also has a Franciscan church dedicated to Saint Anthony, in the Għajn Dwieli zone of the parish. St. Ubaldesca Church is the oldest church in Paola and was the first parish church there, in 2008 the church underwent minimal restoration. Villa Perellos, which is dedicated to the grand master, is a landmark of historical importance for the locality. Mariam Al-Batool Mosque, the mosque in Malta, as well as an Islamic Cultural Centre are found in Paola. The countrys correctional facilities and the largest burial grounds, the Addolorata Cemetery are also in this town, the town is a commercial centre in the Southern Harbour area of Malta, about 5 km from the capital Valletta. Although Paola was founded in the 17th century, several remains have been found within the locality. The Hypogeum has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Hypogeum is a large complex of rooms hewn out of the limestone about 11 metres below the surface. It appears to have used as a burial site. Neolithic man carved out the Hypogeum using only antlers and stone picks as tools, the Hypogeum is made up of three levels, which are superimposed upon each other. The upper level resembles the earlier rock-cut tombs found elsewhere on the Islands, the middle level, hewn out during the temple period is made up of numerous chambers. Many statuettes, amulets, figurines and vases were recovered here, the most famous figurine is that of the so-called Sleeping Lady, a reclining figurine, perhaps meant as a representation of eternal sleep. It is on display at the National Museum of Archaeology, Valletta The Kordin Temples were located on a plain that overlooks the Grand Harbour
Hibernians Stadium is a multi-use stadium in Paola, Malta. The Hibernians football ground was inaugurated on 9 November 1986, Hibernians became the first Maltese club to have their own football pitch. Nonetheless, Hibernians play most of their matches in the National Stadium in Ta Qali. The ground is used by Hibernians for their training sessions. It is also used by the Malta Football Association to host matches from the Maltese First Division, the Malta national rugby union team have recently started to use the ground for their international matches. Hibernians played their first European match on this pitch on 23 July 1996 when they played against Uralmash Yekaterinburg in the Intertoto Cup, the Hibernians Stadium consists of two turf pitches. There is a full size football pitch, and a pitch which is approximately half the width of the main pitch. The club house area has five dressing rooms with showers, physiotherapy rooms, the stadium can hold up about 8000 spectators. In the stands there are two different sections, and a VIP area, the ground is also equipped with a scoreboard and floodlighting system
Mosta Football Club are a Maltese football club from the town of Mosta. The team played four seasons in Maltas highest league 1974–75, 1987–88, 2002–03 and they achieved promotion to the Maltese Premier League again in 2010–11. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality, oliver Spiteri Steve DAmato Danilo Dončić Enrico Piccioni Peter Smith The womens team of Mosta plays in the countrys top division, the Maltese First Division. In 2010–11 it won its first championship and ths qualified to the 2011–12 UEFA Womens Champions League, the team was runners-up in the 1998 and 1999 Maltese Womens Cup and recently won the 2012 cup
Mosta is a town in the Northern Region of Malta, to the north-west of Valletta. In 2014, it had an population of 20,241. Mosta celebrates the feast of the Assumption every 15 August, popular among both the locals and the tourists, the town has many legends such as the Mosta Bride and a lot of historical places such as the Victoria Lines and medieval chapels. Mosta has its own scouts and girl guides as well as two clubs and two fireworks factories. A lot of traffic passes through Constitution Street, one of Mostas main streets which connects the South to the North, the main attraction in Mosta is the Rotunda – a huge round church with the third largest unsupported dome in the world. Mosta boasts the third largest unsupported dome in the World dedicated to the Assumption, the Feast of the Assumption is held on 15 August and it is a public holiday. The church is known as the Rotunda of St Marija Assunta. On 9 April 1942, the church was destroyed during World War II. An Axis bomb hit the dome of the church but failed to explode, the detonator was removed and a replica bomb is now displayed as a memorial. The Rotunda was designed by Giorgio Grognet de Vassé, a French citizen resident in Mosta, Mosta residents, at that time totalling not more than 1500, built the church. It took them 27 years to complete but the result is a tourist attraction of world standard, Grognet chose the type of stone by insisting on having one slab from each quarry operating in the Islands. He then proceeded to test their durability, in the end he chose a quarry in Mosta near to Ta Vnezja, at the gate of an old military airfield. The Cumbo Tower was the stronghold of Mosta in the Middle Ages and it is now owned by the Contessa Preziosi, the daughter of the late Barone della Quleja. As Mosta is at the centre of Malta, buses pass through Mosta on the way to Buġibba, Burmarrad, St. Pauls Bay, Qawra, Xemxija, one attraction in Mosta is the Speranza Chapel, which is situated close to the Speranza Valley. It was built in the 18th century, between 1760 and 1761, a legend tied to this small Chapel recounts that during a Turkish invasion, a young girl and her sisters were taking care of their familys sheep. While the sisters escaped, the girl couldnt run very fast because she limped slightly. It is said that she hid in a cave, and that she prayed to Our Lady and promised that, if she was to get out of there alive, she would build a chapel dedicated to Our Lady. When the Turkish invaders chasing her arrived, they didnt look for her in the cave because they thought the girl could not be hiding there because the web was intact
Qormi, also known by its title Città Pinto, is a city in the Southern Region of Malta, located southwest of Valletta in the centre of the island. It has a population of 16,779, which makes it the fifth largest locality in Malta, the bordering towns of Qormi are Marsa, Luqa, Żebbuġ, Siġġiewi, Ħamrun, Birkirkara, Attard, Santa Venera and Balzan. Qormi has two parishes, one dedicated to Saint George and one to Saint Sebastian, there are also two valleys in Qormi, Wied il-Kbir, and Wied is-Sewda. Elder inhabitants of Qormi speak a thick Qormi Dialect, yet this is now in decline, there are indications of it being inhabited in antiquity. Bronze Age pottery was found in the known as Stabal indicating presence of humans as early as 1500-800 BC. Punic tombs have found at St Edwards Street and Tal-Bajjada. Also, some Ancient Roman remains were found in the valley of Wied il-Kbir, however, chances are that in these times, there were only small communities in the whereabouts of Qormi. It was only in the Middle Ages that it started to grow and prosper, probably thanks to its proximity to the Grand Harbour and its central position. The first written reference to the town is made in 1417 where it is recorded that the town provided some 100 men to serve in the Dejma, the national guard. The town is likely to have suffered a period of decline during the Great Siege of Malta due to the proximity of the Turkish camp in Marsa, the present St George Parish church was completed in 1684. In 1743 the town made a plea to Grand Master Manuel Pinto da Fonseca to elevate it to the level of a city and this was granted and the town received the title of Città Pinto on 25 May 1743. Qormis bakers served most of the islands bread supplies, Qormi also experienced plague, which led to some declines throughout its history. However, during the British rule, Qormi moved on with new institutions opening up, following 1850 Qormi became one of the largest inhabited centres in Malta, with amenities such as water and electricity, which were somewhat rare in those times. Trade and crafts grew, especially Horse racing which is a hobby that Maltese often attribute to people from Qormi, during the World Wars, Qormi played a small part as well. In World War II, people from Qormi formed part of the Armed Forces, Qormi also became a refuge to many people from the Cottonera area, which was badly hit because this area sits off the Grand Harbour, and area which was fiercely attacked by the Axis powers. Qormi, although close, is not exactly in the Grand Harbour region, Qormi has two parishes, dedicated to Saint George and Saint Sebastian. Saint Georges parish was the first one, however, when Qormi was growing, there was the need for the city to be split into two parishes to facilitate growth. Saint Sebastian was chosen because Qormi had turned to him during times of plague infestation, since he is the protector and patron saint of people ill from plague and this led to many Qormi citizens carrying the name of Ġorġ and Bastjan and their equivalents and derivatives
Senglea Athletic F.C.
Senglea Athletic Football Club is an amateur football club. It is the football club in Senglea. This club takes part in the Maltese First Division organised by the Malta Football Association, Senglea Athletic Football Club was founded in 1943. It took over from the former Senglea United club, which had formed in 1921 following the demise of Senglea Shamrocks. After World War II the club began to compete in the division organised by the Malta Football Association. Apart from moments of success and happiness, this also had his disappointing moments. For many times this club had to play in the lowest divisions of Malta, the most moments of glory and happiness occurred in the mid-70s when the club was promoted to the second division, and later on to the first division. For a number of successive times Senglea Athletic F. C. were declared champions of the second division, for another time, in 1981, the club was promoted to the Maltese Premier Division. During that season, Senglea Athletic made history when they contested in the final of the MFA Trophy, while being in the Maltese First Division. The club was very near to participate in the European Cup Winners Cup, during that time the president for the club was Walter Clinch. From that time onwards Senglea Athletic F. C. passed through some very bad due to financial crisis. But then in the year 2000, they got back to their feet and were promoted from the Maltese Third Division to the Maltese Second Division, during that time the president for Senglea Athletic F. C. was Reno Chirchop. The next year, Senglea Athletic F. C. this time again with Msida F. C. were promoted to the Maltese First Division, during that time the president for Senglea Athletic F. C. was Dr. Vincent S. Zammit. The clubs aim of competing in the Maltese Premier League took a step backwards, during the season 2009–10 Senglea Athletic finished in the 9th place, just a position above the relegation play-offs. The home kit of Senglea Athletic F. C. consists of the colours of Senglea, yellow. The manufacturer of the kits is Nike, while the sponsor is Bronk Productions, Note, The same squad number may be used by more than one player. If that is the case, the last player who have used the number is assigned with it. Note, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. Also known as, Minors or Under-19Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality
Senglea, also known by its title Città Invicta, is a fortified city in the South Eastern Region of Malta. It is one of the Three Cities in the Grand Harbour area, the citys title Città Invicta was given because it managed to resist the Ottoman invasion at the Great Siege of Malta in 1565. The name is Senglea since the grandmaster who built it, Claude de la Sengle, the island on which Senglea lies was joined by a land bridge to Cospicua during the time of the Knights of St. John and as a result, it became peninsular in shape. During the time of the Knights of St. John, Senglea was also used as a hunting area, in 1311 St. Julians church or chapel was founded in Isola. This was the first building to be constructed on what later became Senglea, on 8 May 1552 the foundation stone of Fort St. Michael was laid. Work on the fort, which was designed by Architect Pedro Pardo, was completed in 1553, construction of walled town Senglea took place during the following decade. The area, which had until the 1550s been known as Isola di San Giuliano or Isola di San Michele, was given city status by Grand Master Claude De La Sengle and was named after him. Senglea played an important role in the Siege of Malta in 1565, the city was given the title Civitas Invicta by Grand Master Jean Parisot de Valette. In 1581 Senglea became a Parish dedicated to the Nativity of Our Lady, the donation of the statue of Our Lady, popularly known as Il-Bambina, is estimated to have occurred in 1618. Many inhabitants of the city were killed in an outbreak of plague which affected Malta in 1676, in 1789 Senglea was involved in the blockade against French forces, who were ousted from Malta in 1800. The city narrowly escaped being hit by another plague in 1813, the parish church was bestowed with the title of Basilica by Pope Benedict XV in 1921. Senglean-born Ignazio Panzavecchia was elected as the first Prime Minister of Malta in the first Self Government Constitution in the same year, because of his ecclesiastical status he decided not to take up the position. Following Panzavecchias refusal Joseph Howard was appointed as Prime Minister, during the Second World War Senglea suffered heavy bombardments which devastated most of the city and killed many of its citizens. On 16 January 1941 a blitz by the Luftwaffe on HMS Illustrious, docked at the nearby Corradino, caused 21 fatalities, king George VI visited the devastated city on 20 June 1943. The newly built Basilica was consecrated by Archbishop Sir Michael Gonzi on 24 August 1957, the following day the Basilica resumed its normal functions after almost 16 years and the statue of Marija Bambina was placed inside its new temple amongst huge celebrations. Pope John Paul II visited Senglea in May 1990, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Luftwaffe bombing of the city, a monument which honours the local victims of both World Wars was unveiled besides the Basilica on 5 September 1991. The first Local Council of Senglea was formed after an election on 3 March 1994, the first mayor of the city was Stephen Perici. The Italian city of Cassino became a city with Senglea in 2003
Tarxien is a town in the South Eastern Region of Malta. Its population stood at 8583 in March 2014, the town is most notable for the Tarxien Temples, a megalithic temple complex which is among the oldest freestanding structures on Earth. It forms part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the etymology of the village may be a corruption of Tirix, meaning a large stone, similar to those used for the villages noted temples. The village motto is Tyrii Genure Coloni, tarxiens population stood at 7,724 villagers in December 2008, which increased to 8,583 by March 2014. The oldest temple here is said to back to about 3600 BCE. The temples feature various statues and reliefs of animals, including goats, most notable of the statues found in the Temples are about 2.5 m in height, and are said to represent a sort of Mother Goddess. There are several of these statues scattered around the various temples, There was also one of three small baked clay figurines in the form of what is said to be a priest that was found here. The church was elevated to the status of parish in 1592, a key part of Ħal Tarxien culture is the feast of the Annunciation, whose feast is celebrated in late May or first Sunday of June. The second largest church in town is dedicated to the Resurrection of Christ better known by the locals as Ta l-Erwieħ, the word means of the souls and it is used due to the old cemetery that surrounds the church. This church is next to the renowned Tarxien Neolithic Temples and is visited by many tourists as many of the prehistoric remains were also found in the mentioned cemetery. There are two small chapels in Ħal Tarxien. These are dedicated to St. Bartholomew and St. Mary respectively, There is also another chapel which is housed in the convent of the Sisters of Charity. This is dedicated to Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, the same congregation have a school. There is also another church dedicated to St. Nicholas of Tolentino, the Annunciation Band Club http, //www. tarxienbandclub. com There is also another club, a social one, dedicated to Our Lady of Catholic Doctrine. Former Minister Magistrate Dr. Joseph Cassar, former Speaker of the House of the Representatives and Ambassador of Malta to the Vatican, Chev. Dr. Jimmy Farrugia lived at Ħal Tarxien until his death in 2007 and she represented Malta at Eurovision Song Contest 2010
Sliema Wanderers F.C.
Sliema Wanderers Football Club, nicknamed tax-Xelin, are Maltas most successful football team hailing from the town of Sliema, which currently plays in the Maltese Premier League. The club was founded in 1909, the club competed in the first ever Maltese Premier League season in 1909–10 and finished in second position to Floriana after the five game season came to an end. Sliema Wanderers also hold the record for the most FA Trophy wins, with their first coming in 1935, with all these honours, Sliema Wanderers are currently the most successful team in the history of Maltese football with approximately 113 honours. Sliema Wanderers train at the Tigne Sports Complex, in Sliema, Sliema Wanderers also have a futsal team, which participates in Maltas top futsal league. Sliema Wanderers have their own group, which is called the Sliema Wanderers Supporters Club. The supporters group was started by Joe Debono and Mario Avallone, since 2008, a group of young Sliema fans formed the group known as Sliema Ultras Blue Gladiators 2008 better known as. This young group is not only known to support the Blues at football but also Waterpolo, Futsal, Rugby, Hockey and many sports that includes the name. The clubhouse is on Tower Street and welcomes visitors, note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality
Sliema is a town located on the northeast coast of Malta in the Northern Harbour District. It is a residential and commercial area and a centre for shopping, dining. Lining the coastline is a known as the Sliema Front. Romantic moon strolls, barbeques and open air restaurants and cafes have made Sliema the hub of social nightlife, Sliema is also known for its numerous rocky beaches, water sports and hotels. Sliema, which means peace, comfort, was once a fishing village on the peninsula across Marsamxett Harbour from Valletta. The population began to grown in 1853 and the town was declared a parish in 1878, now Sliema and the coastline up to neighbouring St. Julians constitutes Maltas main coastal resort. Sliema is considered a place to live and is relatively affluent. Historically, stylish villas and traditional Maltese townhouses lined the streets of Sliema, Sliema has now been ringed with modern apartment blocks, some of which are amongst the tallest buildings in Malta. This has resulted in significant traffic, parking and construction-related noise pollution issues, residents of Sliema are stereotypically known for their usage of English as a first language, although this is changing in the 21st century due to demographic shifts. Maltese people from Sliema are referred to as Slimiżi, Sliema got its name from the Our Lady of Good Voyage Chapel, that now no longer exists. It periodically served as a point for the sailors and fishermen in Marsamxett Harbour. The name could thus be connected with the first words of the Hail Mary prayer, Sliem is the Maltese word meaning peace. The triconsonantal root of the word is Š-L-M, the construction age of the church is unknown but it was included in a map by the Order of St. John even before being handed the Maltese islands to them. At the Great Siege of 1565, il-Qortin, as it was known, was a camp centre for Turkish troops led by Dragut. He met his fate there, having been killed by a bombardment from Fort St. Elmo at the flank of Marsamxett Harbour. Fort Tigné was eventually built by the Knights of St. John in the late 18th century, in 1855 a new church dedicated to Our Lady Star of the Sea was opened to public worship. Around the new church, the village grew into a town. By 1878, the population grew to such an extent that the authorities had the Stella Maris Church declared a parish in its own right
St. Andrews F.C.
St. Andrews Football Club are a Maltese football club from the town of St. Andrews, Pembroke, which currently plays in the Maltese Premier League. St. Andrews F. C was founded in 1968 as Luxol St. Andrews and it is reputed for its highly organised football nursery, which has produced a number of talented players over the years. The senior team competes in the Maltese Premier League, after promotion from the First Division, the club is part of a multi-sports club, called Luxol Sports Club. Their former coaches include Ally Dawson, who was an ex-Rangers captain, the Luxol St. Andrews futsal team is one of the top futsal teams in Malta at the moment, and plays in Maltas top futsal division. St. Andrews currently play out of the newly refurbished Luxol Stadium, note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality, managing the under-19 squad will be Nenad Veselji and with his Assistant Roger Walker. Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality
Valletta is the capital city of Malta, colloquially known as Il-Belt in Maltese. The historical city has a population of 6,444, while the area around it has a population of 393,938. Valletta is the southernmost capital of Europe and the second southernmost capital of the European Union after Nicosia, Valletta contains buildings from the 16th century onwards, built during the rule of the Order of St. John also known as Knights Hospitaller. The City of Valletta was officially recognised as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1980, the official name given by the Order of Saint John was Humilissima Civitas Valletta—The Most Humble City of Valletta, or Città Umilissima in Italian. The building of a city on the Sciberras Peninsula, originally called Xaghriet Mewwija, had proposed by the Order of Saint John as early as 1524. Back then, the building on the peninsula was a small watchtower dedicated to Erasmus of Formia. In 1552, the watchtower was demolished and the larger Fort Saint Elmo was built in its place, in the Great Siege of 1565, Fort Saint Elmo fell to the Ottomans, but the Order eventually won the siege with the help of Sicilian reinforcements. The victorious Grand Master, Jean de Valette, immediately set out to build a new fortified city on the Sciberras Peninsula to fortify the Orders position in Malta, the city took his name and was called La Valletta. The Grand Master asked the European kings and princes for help, pope Pius V sent his military architect, Francesco Laparelli, to design the new city, while Philip II of Spain sent substantial monetary aid. The foundation stone of the city was laid by Grand Master de Valette on 28 March 1566 and he placed the first stone in what later became Our Lady of Victories Church. De Valette died from a stroke on 21 August 1568 at age 74, originally interred in the church of Our Lady of the Victories, his remains now rest in St. Johns Co-Cathedral among the tombs of other Grand Masters of the Knights of Malta. Francesco Laparelli was the principal designer and his plan departed from medieval Maltese architecture. He designed the new city on a grid plan. The streets were designed to be wide and straight, beginning centrally from the City Gate and ending at Fort Saint Elmo overlooking the Mediterranean and his assistant was the Maltese architect Girolamo Cassar, later oversaw the construction of the city himself after Laparellis death in 1570. The Ufficio delle Case regulated the building of the city as a planning authority, seven Auberges were built for the Orders Langues, and these were complete by the 1580s. An eighth Auberge, Auberge de Bavière, was added in the 18th century. During António Manoel de Vilhenas reign, a town began to form between the walls of Valletta and the Floriana Lines, and this evolved from a suburb of Valletta to Floriana, a town in its own right. In 1749, Muslim slaves plotted to kill Grandmaster Pinto and take over Valletta, in 1798, the Order left the islands and the French occupation of Malta began