ABSA Premiership Week 16 Preview

Written by The Caretaker Coach for @Hollywoodbets. Follow them both on Twitter and Facebook now!  

This gameweek represents the start of the countdown for PSL teams to the Christmas break. With just over a week to go, most sides have three games to play before the ABSA Premiership returns in early February. This weekend sees a full spread of fixtures to tackle, with the clash between Pirates and Ajax Cape Town on Saturday evening a certain drawcard. Let’s get straight to it.

Maritzburg United vs AmaZulu | Friday 12 December | Harry Gwala Stadium | 20:00
The only two KZN sides in the league are sitting at polar opposites on the table. Maritzburg United, as host on Friday evening, have continued their run of notching up league points. Despite only one win in five games, they sit tied fifth, within striking distance of third-placed Sundowns. AmaZulu, who only registered their first league win at the beginning of this month, still sit far off the pace at the bottom of the PSL, and with a -13 goal difference from their opening twelve games. They look certain to rack up another loss here. Home ground advantage, weak opponents and an opportunity to climb into the top four should be enough motivation to get Maritzburg the win. Get them at 6/10.

University of Pretoria vs Mamelodi Sundowns | Saturday 13 December | Tuks Stadium | 15:30
AmaTuks were the first side to lose to AmaZulu ten days back, their only loss in their last five games. Unfortunately a poor start means they’re playing catch-up now, as they look to climb up from fourteenth spot. Sundowns meanwhile have certainly found their footing, and despite just missing out on an away win to Pirates in midweek, will be on the road with full confidence this weekend. AmaTuks’ recent form may provide for slightly greater resistance than if this fixture has been played earlier in the season. There should be a little value in taking a Sundowns Draw No Bet and should be included into multiples.

Mpumalanga Black Aces vs Free State Stars | Saturday 13 December | Mbombela Stadium | 15:30
Clive Barker seems to have galvanised his troops of late. A disappointing start to the campaign has now seen them pick up gradual momentum, and they now find themselves in seventh, just six points off second spot. The tight bunching of these teams mean a win here could do Aces a world of good. Free State Stars are the potential victims and with just a single win and four losses in their last five, this fixture looks like it could be Aces’ to lose. They’ve never lost to Stars at home either, so lets hope we don’t put the mockers on them. A home win at 8/10 looks the best bet here.

Kaizer Chiefs vs Chippa United | Saturday 13 December | Peter Mokaba Stadium | 18:00
This fixture should provide an entertaining spectacle for the neutral. Chiefs don’t look like deviating from their splendid run, which sees them eleven points ahead of second spot. Chippa United have been the surprise package of the season, fresh talent playing ballsy football to find themselves tied sixth, despite a zero goal difference. The to and fro nature of their results has paid off, with just three draws in their opening fourteen games. Chiefs pose a much greater threat for them though, and at 11/20 a home win, you have to feel the bookies have given Chippa some credit. Still, in the form the AmaKhosi are in, it’s tough to bet against them.

Orlando Pirates vs Ajax Cape Town | Saturday 13 December | Orlando Stadium | 20:15
Pirates came back from a goal down to earn an acceptable draw against high-flying Sundowns in midweek, but this highlights their continued lack of winning football. Ajax have looked a much better side, despite only being four points ahead of Bucs in third. Their weakness has been their travelling; with only two wins on the road so far. The home side should be able to take advantage of this, despite the bookies pricing them up at 12/10 a win. The Draw No Bet could provide some value to include in big multiples, but as a single bet, I’m sticking my neck out here and predicting a rare Pirates win.

SuperSport United vs Polokwane City | Saturday 13 December | Lucas Moripe Stadium | 18:00
SuperSport have started to stutter again after it seemed Gordon Igesund had turned things around at the club. They got a credible away point against Ajax on the weekend, but recent losses to Sundowns, Pirates and Maritzburg highlight the gap that still exists, preventing them from being one of the big teams at the moment. Polokwane City have taken advantage of a fairly easy run of games to notch up four wins and a draw to Chiefs in their last five. This saw them win the PSL Q2 prize and R1,5 million in their kitty. They’ll look to continue this strong run and have the potential to take points off the home side. The Away/Draw Double Chance is paying 1/2 , and looks the right way to go in this leg.

Platinum Stars vs Bidvest Wits | Sunday 14 December | Royal Bafokeng Stadium | 15:30
Stars earned themselves an unlikely draw in midweek away to Chiefs, a feat not many teams could produce. This unfortunately hasn’t been a habit this season, as they find themselves in an uncharacteristic twelfth spot. Interestingly, their home form seems to be their strong point, only having lost there once so far this season. Wits are in great form and sit at the head of the peloton chasing down Chiefs. Four wins from their last five in the league means they’re playing consistent football. They have picked up some disappointing results on the road however, and I fancy Stars to upset their winning streak on Sunday. I wouldn’t include in multiples, but the draw at 22/10 and a Stars win at 2/1 could be the value of the weekend. I’m putting the draw as my value bet for the gameweek.

Bloemfontein Celtic vs Moroka Swallows | Sunday 14 December | Free State Stadium | 15:30
Both sides have had indifferent campaigns so far. Celtic have lost three on the trot and sit in tenth with sixteen points from their fourteen games. Swallows are the worse off of the two however, despite recent results on the road going in their favour. This lack of consistency from both sides puts this game in the balance. They’re both PSL stalwarts, so should really be reaping greater rewards for their years of service in the top flight. Celtic are priced as weak favourites at 12/10, but five out of the last six encounters between these sides have ended in stalemates, making this a tough one to call. All these games have had goals and with both sides lacking solid defenses, a Both Teams To Score punt should be a profitable one.

The man knows his football, but even he gets it wrong from time to time. Feel free to share your PSL tips and multiples below.