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UEFA President Michel Platini visits Malta

UEFA President Michel Platini has visited Malta, where he met government and Malta Football Association leaders, inaugurated Fgura United FC's facilities and attended a league game.

UEFA President Michel Platini has paid a fruitful visit to Malta.

The trip featured the official inauguration of Fgura United FC's facilities – a project partly funded by the UEFA HatTrick assistance programme – and attendance at the Premier League match between Valletta FC and Floriana FC at the National Stadium, Ta' Qali.

Mr Platini was joined by Maltese Prime Minister Dr Lawrence Gonzi and also met with Clyde Puli, the Maltese parliamentary secretary of youth and sport, as well as Malta Football Association (MFA) president Norman Darmanin Demajo,

Founded in 1971, Fgura United are the oldest sporting organisation in the locality of Fgura. The team are currently in second place in the Maltese third division.

During his inauguration speech in Fgura, the UEFA President stressed the value of having as many football pitches as possible. "The most important objective is that these youngsters and aspiring footballers continue to enjoy themselves through these pitches," he said.

Mr Platini also emphasised the importance and the duty of UEFA to assist all the UEFA member associations, irrespective of their size. "I am so very pleased to be in Malta, even for a short time. I had promised Norman Darmanin Demajo that I would be paying a visit to Malta for the fruitful work he was doing within the Malta Football Association and for the good of Maltese football in general.

"It is always nice to open new football grounds, such as we did at Fgura United FC today. It is our duty to help national associations to develop and to assist youngsters to develop. What we did at Fgura reflects what we have to do in the future – the development of international football, the development of the national associations of UEFA.

"What really is important, and what interests me, comes from the fact of seeing these youngsters enjoy themselves in a safe environment and seeing them nurtured for future generations," continued Mr Platini, who also watched the reigning champions and league leaders Valletta defeat Floriana 2-0 on Saturday afternoon.