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Former Valletta FC coach Tony Formosa passes away

Tony Formosa

Former Valletta FC coach Tony Formosa passes away at the age of 86 years.

Born in Victoria, Gozo, on June 2, 1937, Formosa received his education at the Lyceum first in Hamrun, then in Valletta and at St Michael’s Training College on the Heights of Ta’ Giorni from where he qualified as a teacher specialising in mathematics and physical education. He continued his studies at the famous Carnegie College of PE in Leeds where he obtained a diploma with distinction.

In 1962 he successfully followed a coaching course at Elland Road, Leeds and obtained the FA Preliminary Coaching certificate. That same year he followed yet another course at Newcastle-Upon-Tyne University where he became the first Maltese to receive the Full Badge which meant that he could coach the game of Association Football at all levels.

His first appointment as coach was with Zejtun Corinthians. Later on, he led Hamrun Spartans, Valletta, Floriana and Sliema Wanderers through some of the best periods of their history.

In 1967, he was given charge of the Malta Youths side, taking the team through to the UEFA Youths championships against Italy, England, East Germany and Czechoslovakia. Then, between 1971 and 1973, Formosa was national team coach, leading the team to victory over Libya (1-0) and a draw (1-1) against Algeria.

He proudly led the Malta team at the ‘old’ Wembley Stadium and was also manager/coach of the national team that played its first World Cup qualifier against Hungary in 1971.

Formosa had successful coaching spells with Valletta, Floriana, and Sliema Wanderers, while in between he coached the Malta Under-18 side on three occasions with matches against Italy, Switzerland and Austria.

In 1987, after the UEFA Cup match with Valletta with Juventus, Formosa retired from coaching after 197 top flight matches