Maltese Premier League
The Maltese Premier League, known as BOV Premier League for sponsorship reasons with Bank of Valletta (colloquially known as Il-Kampjonat Premjer), is the highest level of professional football in Malta. Managed by the Malta Football Association, the Premier League is contested by 16 teams and operates on a promotion and relegation system with the Challenge League. As of July 2021, the Premier League ranks 46th out of 55 members in the UEFA coefficient.
|Organising body||Malta Football Association (MFA)|
|Number of teams||12|
|Level on pyramid||1|
|Relegation to||Maltese Challenge League|
|Domestic cup(s)||Maltese FA Trophy|
Maltese Super Cup
|International cup(s)||UEFA Champions League|
UEFA Europa Conference League
|Current champions||Ħamrun (8th title) |
|Most championships||Sliema Wanderers and Floriana (26th title each)|
|TV partners||TVM2 & Melita Sports 1 (live matches)|
|Current: 2021–22 Maltese Premier League|
The league was first competed in 1909 as the First Division, before switching to its current name in 1980; the First Division in turn replaced the Second Division. Sliema Wanderers and Floriana have won the title a record 26 times. The current champions are Ħamrun who won their 8th title in the 2020–21 season.
- 5 clubs: 1909–1912
- 8 clubs: 1912–1913
- 7 clubs: 1913–1914
- 6 clubs: 1914–1917
- 8 clubs: 1917–1918
- 5 clubs: 1918–1919
- 6 clubs: 1919–1920
- 9 clubs: 1920–1921
- 7 clubs: 1921–1922
- 6 clubs: 1922–1923
- 5 clubs: 1923–1924
- 8 clubs: 1924–1925
- 7 clubs: 1925–1926
- 4 clubs: 1926–1927
- 7 clubs: 1927–1928
- 3 clubs: 1928–1929
- 5 clubs: 1929–1930
- 4 clubs: 1930–1933
- 2 clubs: 1933–1934
- 7 clubs: 1934–1935
- 3 clubs: 1935–1936
- 4 clubs: 1936–1945
- 7 clubs: 1945–1946
- 8 clubs: 1946–1964
- 7 clubs: 1964–1965
- 6 clubs: 1965–1967
- 8 clubs: 1967–1971
- 10 clubs: 1971–1980
- 8 clubs: 1980–1988
- 9 clubs: 1988–1991
- 10 clubs: 1991–2011
- 12 clubs: 2011–2017
- 14 clubs: 2017–2020
- 16 clubs: 2020–2021
- 12 clubs: 2021–2022
Starting from the 2020–21 season, the Premier League is contested by 16 clubs. Played from September to May, each club plays each other's twice (a double round-robin system), for a total of 30 games. Teams receive three points for a win and one point for a draw. No points are awarded for a loss. The club with the most points is crowned as champion. If two teams are tied in points (for any place), there will be no tie-breakers will play a decider match. If three or more teams are tied in points (for any place), there will be check by Head-to-head points and the best two teams will play a decider match
To determine the champion or qualification to UEFA competitions, a play-off is played to determine the winner. The two lowest placed teams are relegated into the Challenge League and the twelfth-placed team plays a play-off against the third-placed team from the First Division with the winner either keeping their place or get promoted to the top-tier league.
Clubs finishing the season in the top positions of the Premier League are granted qualification to compete in one of UEFA's European competition. This is determined by Malta's position in the UEFA coefficients ranking system.
As of the 2017–18 season, the league winner qualifies to the first qualifying round for the UEFA Champions League. The second- and third-placed teams qualify for the first qualifying round and the preliminary round for the UEFA Europa League, respectively. An additional Europa League place is taken through the country's domestic cup competition, the FA Trophy. If the winner of the FA Trophy qualifies for Europe through their league position, the fourth-placed team in the league qualifies for the Europa League's preliminary round.
The Premier Division Standing Committee (PDSC) is a body composed of the Premier League club presidents who represent their club on a board. These do not have executive powers but are a formal body that has official influence with regards to rules, regulations and issues that relate to the league. From time to time the committee makes proposals to the respective and MFA bodies for approval.
|Ta' Qali||Ta' Qali||Paola|
|Ta' Qali National Stadium||Centenary Stadium||Hibernians Ground|
|Capacity: 16,997||Capacity: 3,000||Capacity: 2,968|
The following 16 clubs will compete in the Premier League during the 2020–21 season.
|Team||In league since||City||Training Stadium||Capacity|
|Balzan||2011||Balzan||St. Aloysius Sports and Recreational Complex||100|
|Gudja United||2019||Gudja||Louis Azzopardi Stadium|
|Gżira United||2016||Gżira||Gzira Football Ground||0|
|Ħamrun Spartans||2016||Ħamrun||Victor Tedesco Stadium||6,000|
|Lija Athletic||2020||Lija||Lija Stadium||500|
|Mosta||2011||Mosta||Charles Abela Memorial Stadium||600|
|St. Lucia||2019||Santa Luċija||Grawnd Santa Luċija|
|Senglea Athletic||2017||Senglea||Corradino C||100|
|Sirens||2019||St. Paul's Bay||Sirens Stadium||600|
|Sliema Wanderers||1984||Sliema||Tigne Sports Complex||1,000|
|Tarxien Rainbows||2008||Tarxien||Tony Cassar Sports Ground||1,000|
In total, ten clubs have won the Maltese championship, including titles in the old First Division which was replaced in 1980 by the Premier League. Of the winners, three have been champions more than 20 times: Sliema Wanderers (26 titles), Floriana (26 titles), and Valletta (25 titles).
The honour of Golden Stars was introduced in football to recognize sides that have won multiple championships. In Malta, clubs are permitted to place a golden star above their crest for every ten nation championships won. Sliema Wanderers, Floriana and Valletta boast two golden stars, and Hibernians have one golden star placed above their crest on their jerseys.
Bold teams are Current in the Maltese Premier League
Bold denotes still active players.
- "UEFA Country Ranking 2019". kassiesa.home.xs4all.nl. July 26, 2018.
- "The Premier League Is 25 years old". The Malta Independent. August 14, 2005. Retrieved October 20, 2018.
- Camilleri, Valhmor (July 5, 2016). "BOV Premier League to increase to 14 teams". Times of Malta. Retrieved September 8, 2018.
- "Malta - List of Champions and Runners-Up". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. May 2, 2018. Retrieved September 8, 2018.