Thursday 19 November 2020, 13:56

Six steps forward for Malta

  • Malta the most-improved side in last edition of FIFA Ranking

  • The Knights moved from 186th to 180th place

  • We look at six stats behind their rise of six places

"As long as my body allows me to play, I’ll continue. The motivation will always be there" The words are those of Michael Mifsud from September 2013. At the time, the striker had just made history by scoring the decisive goal in Malta's first away win, against Armenia, in a FIFA World Cup™ qualifier.

Seven years later, Mifsud was again on the scoresheet, but for the last time in red and white after calling time on his international career at the age of 39. The goal – his 42nd in 143 appearances, both of which are Maltese records – came in the fifth minute of his side’s 3-0 friendly win over Liechtenstein on 11 November. The victory formed part of Malta’s best-ever unbeaten run, which now stands at seven games.

Malta were also the most-improved side in the last edition of the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking. We mark their ascent of six places with six team stats.

Malta national soccer team defender Steve Borg (4) is mobbed in celebrations 

Did you know?

Malta may be one of the smallest countries in the world, but the island has a long footballing tradition. The Maltese Football Association (MFA) was created in 1900, even before the foundation of FIFA, and is celebrating its 120th anniversary this year.