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The unseen struggles of football investors: a call for respect and prudence

It is now official: my journey in local football and my tenure as president of Santa Lucia FC have come to an end.

After much contemplation and consideration, I have decided to step away from the sport that has been a significant part of my life for so long. This choice did not come easily.

Football has been more than just a game to me; it has been a passion, a source of joy, and a platform for personal growth. However, as time passed, I found myself increasingly at odds with certain aspects of the local football system.

The decision to walk away is not solely due to one reason but rather a culmination of various factors.

While personal considerations play a part, the primary catalyst for my decision to quit is rooted in my frustration with a football system that does not support individuals like me who genuinely wish to contribute positively to the game, but consistently encounter obstacles.

Over the years, I have witnessed firsthand the complexities and challenges within local football.

My own principles and values no longer align with the prevailing norms within local football. The pursuit of success at any cost and the lack of accountability have eroded my enthusiasm for the sport.

I have seen prioritisation of personal gains and observed short-term achievements over the long -term development of the game, leading to a toxic environment where the true spirit of football is often overshadowed by the relentless pursuit of winning at all costs. The widespread hypothesis of corruption and unethical practices that plague football has made it increasingly difficult for me to protect my integrity.

Investing in local football is a work of love, driven by passion and dedication. Yet, those who commit their resources to the sport are often met with a lack of respect.

Contrary to what one particular club president repeatedly insinuated last season, club presidents are not clowns. Instead, they are often viewed as crazy for their unwavering commitment. These individuals are not protected; rather, they are pushed to their limits, receiving little help or respect for their sacrifices.

For the past four years, I have persistently urged the Malta FA (MFA) to introduce corporate structuring. This should have been the first item on the agenda in 2019.

However, it was deeply disappointing to hear one of the association’s vice presidents on TV claim that their first four years in office were dedicated to the association itself. Only now, he said, would their focus shift more towards the clubs.

This approach is fundamentally flawed. The focus should have been the opposite. The clubs are the core of the association and the backbone of Maltese football.

Without the dedication and investment from the few individuals who support these clubs, Maltese football would not exist.

The need for corporate structuring is paramount. It provides a clear framework for managing clubs sustainably, ensuring that they can thrive and contribute to the sport’s overall health.

However, the Malta FA’s delay in prioritising this reform has left clubs in limbo, struggling to find stability and growth.

Investors in football deserve better.

They need to be acknowledged for their contributions, protected from undue pressures, and supported in their efforts to build stronger, more sustainable clubs. The MFA must truly shift its priorities to place clubs at the forefront of its agenda.

Only then can Maltese football justly flourish, benefiting from the dedication and passion of those willing to invest in its future.

Moreover, the rivalry in football should remain confined to the 90 minutes on the pitch. Presidents and club executives should all be in the same boat, united by the common goal of improving the game.

Unfortunately, I have experienced disrespect from those who, to my face, act respectfully but show contrary behaviour behind my back. It is unacceptable to me that instead of working together towards common goals for the betterment of the game, there is continuous backstabbing from those who seem to show respect outwardly.

Being the president of a football club, especially a small club like Santa Lucia with no significant income at all, becomes immensely stressful.

The financial constraints force a constant struggle to make ends meet, often requiring personal sacrifices that go beyond what anyone should endure. Personal life is forgotten as the demands of the club consume your time and energy. The focus on your own business diminishes as club responsibilities take precedence, leading to professional setbacks and financial strain.

The stress takes a significant toll on your health. Long hours, constant worry, and the pressure to perform under tight constraints lead to physical exhaustion and mental fatigue.

The emotional burden is heavy, with feelings of frustration and anger accumulating over time. Your character changes as the relentless pressure hardens you, replacing the initial passion and enthusiasm with bitterness and resentment.

This is not the life that anyone who invests in football should have to endure. The emotional and mental toll it takes is substantial, leading to a life filled with stress and discontent rather than the joy and fulfilment that should come from contributing to the sport.


Instead of feeling rewarded for your efforts, you feel drained, disillusioned and disrespected.

As I step away with the consciousness that I will not see any return on the commitment I made during my time as president, I do so with a sense of relief and liberation.

While my time in local football has been filled with highs and lows, I am grateful for the experiences and lessons it has taught me. Moving forward, I am excited to explore possibilities in football differently than what my role was.

Though the journey ahead may be uncertain, I am confident that it will lead me to new opportunities, passions and endeavours where I can make a meaningful difference.

As I bid farewell to local football and my role at Santa Lucia FC, I want to express my heartfelt gratitude to the committee members, coaches, and players I have worked with. I did my best within my capabilities and always acted in the club’s best interests, driven by my love for our hometown club.

I wish them the best of luck for the future.

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