Government's investment benefits clubs' infrastructural projectsPublished: 12-02-2012 02:20
The Malta Football Association’s ambitious plan, also through the co-operation of UEFA and the government, to support the project of building and improving club facilities in Malta and Gozo is high on the association’s agenda. These facilities are bound to improve the infrastructure of our football from the very base and provide players and football followers with modern facilities over a wide area of our islands. This initiative was further endorsed when in a recent significant activity held at the Centenary Hall, Ta’ Qali, Minister of Finance, Economy and Investment Tonio Fenech, Clyde Puli, Parliamentary Secretary for Youth and Sport, and MFA president Norman Darmanin Demajo signed an agreement between the government and the association whereby €9 million will be available to the clubs for the next two years with a view to building and improving football facilities to include synthetic pitches in 19 more clubs after 33 had benefitted from such a project since 2008. Darmanin Demajo expressed the association’s satisfaction at the signing of this agreement which is translated into a long-term investment, stressing that the MFA was committed to improving the facilities for Maltese and Gozitan clubs. He said that infrastructure must be complemented by management skills and constant maintenance. Funds were needed to see such projects through and the onus was on the clubs to administer the funds properly. The government is conscious of this and hence its readiness to provide funds. However, financial fair play was central to all this. He then broke the news that UEFA president, Michel Platini will be paying a visit to Malta on 31 March. One of the activities he will take part in during this brief stay is the inauguration of a new synthetic pitch at Fgura. The MFA top official hoped that Platini would also have time to visit Gozo to see for himself the facilities which are available in the sister island. Finally, he thanked the clubs and nurseries for all their dedication and sterling work they have been doing, adding that his dream is focused on improving the clubs’ facilities and that he will not stop in his efforts until this ambition is fulfilled. Clyde Puli said that the agreement sealed another series of upgrading works for football clubs. The funds will be passed on directly and managed by the association’s member clubs. He also expressed his satisfaction that the agreement was reached through the direct intervention of the finance ministry. Tonio Fenech said that despite having to cut down public spending as required by the EU, the government has increased its aid towards further boosting the culture and sports levels in our country. This, he affirmed, is vital for our citizens, and the government was committed towards providing financial backing to these sectors of society. This is the result of co-operation all around and such efforts will have a positive social impact.