Richard MANNING, Secretary of the Gibraltar FA, insists this evening’s friendly against Hibs is anything but meaningless for UEFA’s youngest nation.
The tiny British territory at the tip of Spain was ratified on May 24 and are preparing for their first-ever competitive internationals when Euro 2016 qualification kicks off next year.
While Hibs are seeking to build fitness, the encounter is vital for Gibraltar, managed by Allen Bula, as they hone their skills ahead of the step up.
“We try to entertain as many of these type of matches as possible during the summer and we are really look forward to it,” said Manning. “They are important to test the players as we near the Euro 2016 draw on February 23. It has been phenomenally exciting ever since we were voted in [to UEFA].”
As well as being UEFA’s newest national side, Gibraltar is the smallest, with just 30,000 people and 600 registered footballers. They boast just one professional, Liam Walker, a 25-year-old on the books of Portsmouth.