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.[1]

Maltese Premier League
Organising bodyMalta Football Association (MFA)
Founded1909; 112 years ago (1909)
Country Malta
ConfederationUEFA
Number of teams12
Level on pyramid1
Relegation toMaltese Challenge League
Domestic cup(s)Maltese FA Trophy
Maltese Super Cup
International cup(s)UEFA Champions League
UEFA Europa Conference League
Current championsĦamrun (8th title)
(2020–21)
Most championshipsSliema Wanderers and Floriana (26th title each)
TV partnersTVM2 & Melita Sports 1 (live matches)
WebsiteMFA.com.mt
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;[2] 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.

Format


  • 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.[3]

European qualification

UEFA coefficients 2018–19
Rank Association Coefficient
43 Luxembourg 5.625
44 Armenia 5.250
45 Malta 5.250
46 Estonia 5.000
47 Georgia 4.750

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.

League committees


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.

Venues


Ta' Qali Ta' Qali Paola
Ta' Qali National Stadium Centenary Stadium Hibernians Ground
Capacity: 16,997 Capacity: 3,000 Capacity: 2,968

Clubs


2020–21 season

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
Birkirkara 1990 Birkirkara Mgarr Ground 0
Floriana 1986 Floriana Independence Arena 0
Gudja United 2019 Gudja Louis Azzopardi Stadium
Gżira United 2016 Gżira Gzira Football Ground 0
Ħamrun Spartans 2016 Ħamrun Victor Tedesco Stadium 6,000
Hibernians 1945 Paola Hibernians Ground 2,968
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
Valletta 1944 Valletta Sirens Stadium 600
Zejtun Corinthians 2020

Champions


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.[4] 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.

Club Winners[4] Runners-up Winning years
Sliema Wanderers 26 29 1919–20, 1922–23, 1923–24, 1925–26, 1929–30, 1932–33, 1933–34, 1935–36, 1937–38, 1938–39, 1939–40, 1948–49, 1953–54, 1955–56, 1956–57, 1963–64, 1964–65, 1965–66, 1970–71, 1971–72, 1975–76, 1988–89, 1995–96, 2002–03, 2003–04, 2004–05
Floriana 26 12 1909–10, 1911–12, 1912–13, 1920–21, 1921–22, 1924–25, 1926–27, 1927–28, 1928–29, 1930–31, 1934–35, 1936–37, 1949–50, 1950–51, 1951–52, 1952–53, 1954–55, 1957–58, 1961–62, 1967–68, 1969–70, 1972–73, 1974–75, 1976–77, 1992–93, 2019–20
Valletta 25 18 1914–15, 1931–32, 1944–45, 1945–46, 1947–48, 1958–59, 1959–60, 1962–63, 1973–74, 1977–78, 1979–80, 1983–84, 1989–90, 1991–92, 1996–97, 1997–98, 1998–99, 2000–01, 2007–08, 2010–11, 2011–12, 2013–14, 2015–16, 2017–18, 2018–19
Hibernians 12 15 1960–61, 1966–67, 1968–69, 1978–79, 1980–81, 1981–82, 1993–94, 1994–95, 2001–02, 2008–09, 2014–15, 2016–17
Ħamrun Spartans 8 11 1913–14, 1917–18, 1946–47, 1982–83, 1986–87, 1987–88, 1990–91, 2020–21
Birkirkara 4 8 1999–2000, 2005–06, 2009–10, 2012–13
Rabat Ajax 2 1 1984–85, 1985–86
St. George's 1 4 1916–17
Marsaxlokk 1 1 2006–07
The King's Own Malta Regiment 1 0 1918–19

Bold teams are Current in the Maltese Premier League

League appearances


Player Matches
Mario Muscat 501
Brian Said 425
Stefan Sultana 424

Bold denotes still active players.

References


  1. "UEFA Country Ranking 2019". kassiesa.home.xs4all.nl. July 26, 2018.
  2. "The Premier League Is 25 years old". The Malta Independent. August 14, 2005. Retrieved October 20, 2018.
  3. Camilleri, Valhmor (July 5, 2016). "BOV Premier League to increase to 14 teams". Times of Malta. Retrieved September 8, 2018.
  4. "Malta - List of Champions and Runners-Up". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. May 2, 2018. Retrieved September 8, 2018.