GHAXAQ FOOTBALL CLUB

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OUR HISTORY

Back in 1939

 

Football originated in Ghaxaq in 1939. The founder of the first team in the village, Ghaxaq United, was Indri Mizzi, k/a bevvet. Ghaxaq United played only friendly matches at the time. All players were from Ghaxaq, amongst whom Gammari Bartolo (k/a iz-zuba), Carmel Agius (k/a majmin), Salvu Dimech (k/a fantin), Peppi Spiteri (k/a is-surgent) and Tony Schembri (k/a ta' santu). But Ghaxaq United didn't last long and the village had to wait until 1950-51 to have another team...Ghaxaq FC.

 

Ghaxaq FC originated in the summer of 1950 and immediately found their place in the MFA Third Division Championship. They played their first match against Siggiewi FC on the 15th October, 1950. It was a promising start since they won the match 2-1. Still, their standing in the championship was always a struggle and the end of the season found them classified in the lower ranks. The following season didn't get any easier. However, they managed to keep their 3rd Division standing till the 1955-56 season, where they had to play a relegation decider against Lija Athletics when they found themselves last place in Section A. Since this game drew 2-2 a replay was scheduled, but for some reason Ghaxaq never showed up and Lija got the walkover. As a result of all this, Ghaxaq were relegated and their place was taken by Gharghur Excelsior. That was the end of Ghaxaq team. In the early 60s another amateur team was formed under the name of Ghaxaq Colts, which name was later on changed to Ghaxaq Gazelles.

 

This latter team was made up of young players amongst whom Charlie Buttigieg, the brothers Frans and Mario Caruana and Ninu Dimech. The team was then lead by Anglu Dimech.

 

The first Ghaxaq Gazelles competed in MAFA, but in the 1967-68 season they enlisted in the MFA. The 1969-70 season was not one of the best seasons for Ghaxaq. The team ranked last and were obliged to play deciders with Mqabba and Qrendi. Ghaxaq ended up being relegated and consequently lost their place in the championship.

France Zahra (photo) was the first president of Ghaxaq FC.

 

Ghaxaq FC back in the scene

 

Only the minors team represented Ghaxaq in the 1970-71 season. This team once again gave life to the competitive game of football in Ghaxaq. They not only won Section E but also made it to the final of the Minors Cup. They lost 2-0 in the final match against Floriana. However, the players who competed in that match were later on part of the essential formation of the team which gave Ghaxaq much gratification in the following years.

 

It was in the 1971-72 season that the MFA accepted Ghaxaq’s application to take part in the Third Division. This time round Ghaxaq not only did not end up relegated, but five years later they managed to win their place in Second Division for the first time in their team’s history.

 

The 1975-76 season was an unforgettable one. It was a season where the team won every possible prize and honour the Third Division had to offer. Therein, they won the Championship, the Cup, and the Sons Cup of Malta. It was really a triple awe.

 

Ghaxaq at its peak

 

 

 

The 1978-79 Second Division season was one totally dominated by Ghaxaq FC. During that season there was never any doubt whether Ghaxaq would get promoted. Coach Tony Calleja was an important contributor to this success. It was he who lead the relatively new team of Ghaxaq from one success to another in such a short span of time.

 

The players who featured most in this achievement were brothers Joe and Gwido Aquilina, Leli Cristiano and Joseph Agius. Cristiano, later on became well known with Valletta team. As part of the Valletta team he won several honours and can be considered as the most prominent player who came out of Ghaxaq. Joseph Agius also played for Floriana FC.

 

Ghaxaq only lasted one season in the First Division. Struggling against the best was too difficult. At the end of the season they were relegated and little by little the team slipped to the bottom ranks of the general championship. Since then the team has never reached the 1977-80 levels again.

 

1984-85 season

 

Ghaxaq continued their descent until they ended up in Third Division again. There was an improvement in 1984-85 where Ghaxaq got promoted to the Second Division that season.

 

Lead by coach Joseph Aquilina, Ghaxaq was the only undefeated team in Third Division. They attained 19 points, together with Fgura United, so a decider match was scheduled. Ghaxaq won the match against Fgura 6-5 on penalties and climbed back to the Second Division after an absence of four seasons.

 

Ghaxaq closed the 1985-86 season ranking somewhere in the middle of the Second Division classification. They had a quiet season, but the following season saw a turn of events. Ghaxaq then, not only found themselves relegated but also suffered 72 goals, an average of 4 goals per match. At the time the results showed with just how much interest and enthusiasm they were playing. There was a general lack of discipline and organization in the team.

 

The seven years that followed were considered as seven years of deprivation. It seems that the team was not keen enough to try regain its place in Second Division. Still, there came a time where Ghaxaq got their opportunity again. It was in the 1994-95 season that Ghaxaq FC was once again promoted.

 

In the following season Ghaxaq continued their march to success. They encountered little opposition in Second Division. In fact, they only lost one match, against Marsaxlokk. The gap between them and the rest of the teams was so wide that they ended the season with a twelve point advantage over Qormi, who classified second.

 

In the decider match against Xaghjra Tornadoes, Ghaxaq won 2-1, to become the champions in Second Division. They also did well in the Knock-Out, making it to the final where they then unfortunately lost 5-2 against Gozo FC.

 

Unluckily, Ghaxaq’s experience in First Division was not only short lived but also an unpleasant one. While Xaghjra Tornadoes, who qualified to First Division at the same time, went on to win the championship and find their place in the Premier League, Ghaxaq FC did exactly the opposite. With just 9 points gained out of 18 matches played, they ended up at the bottom of the final classification and found themselves once again in the Second Division.

 

Season 1997-98 saw Ghaxaq FC being relegated to the Third Division, where they can still be found to this day.

Season 2008-2009

Ghaxaq FC had a good season as they got the best placing since relegated to Third Division. Ghaxaq finished fourth, just one point short from competing for promotion play-offs. Total points obtained 29 (8 wins, 5 draws, 5 loses) .The club's top scorer, Johann Zammit, finished runner up top scorer of the third division.
Season 2009-2010
 
This season was a memorable one since for the first time since the new format for the third division was established, Ghaxaq FC made it for the promotion play-offs. In fact our team placed third with 31 points from 18 matches.
Unfortunately the team lost the first match of the play-offs which ended all hopes of promotion to the second division.