Orlando Pirates vs Mamelodi Sundowns Preview

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

Orlando Pirates vs Mamelodi Sundowns | Wednesday 10 December | Orlando Stadium | 19:30

With only a handful of midweek fixtures, I’ve decided to instead focus on what surely will be the drawcard. Even with Chiefs, Wits and Ajax playing in the same gameweek, an age-old rivalry of this nature takes preference. Pirates hold a slight advantage head-to-head, with just three more wins for Bucs in the years of history between them. What’s also interesting in that the away side has won the last six encounters; perhaps more coincidental based on form, but something worth bearing in mind.

To Win (90mins)
Orlando Pirates 17/10
Draw 19/10
Mamelodi Sundowns 17/10

Orlando Pirates
The home side come into this fixture a little devoid of confidence. Back-to-back PSL losses for Bucs never go down well with their faithful supporters, and with Eric Tinkler stepping in for the second time in a year as caretaker coach, there doesn’t seem much reprieve for them anytime soon. Team owners in the PSL seem to always feel the coaches are to blame for poor results, but considering that Bucs’ now ex-coach, Vladimir Vermezovic, basically built Kaizer Chiefs into the powerhouse they are today, it seems Irvin Khoza is searching for quick fixes rather than investing in long term solutions. Pirates aren’t going anywhere at the moment, and this mismanagement and poor decision making is going to continue their run of inconsistent results.

Mamelodi Sundowns
I think it’s finally safe to say that Sundowns have hit their straps. It’s often easier to pursue in the league, and with Chiefs out in front by thirteen points, there’s certainly a big enough carrot for them to chase. Interestingly enough, their last loss came back in August, against the very same rivals they’ll be facing on Wednesday night. I remarked back then that Downs looked a little shaky, and despite being second on the log now, took those first few games to get back into the swing of PSL action. Cuthbert Malajila, Teko Modise and Khama Billiat have all shone for them in the last few weeks, and they’ll certainly be hitting this fixture at the peak of their current run. After Pirates’ loss in the Soweto Derby on Saturday, they will, without a doubt, be the in-form team of the two.

VERDICT: Sundowns Draw No Bet 17/20
Both sides are evenly poised at 17/10 for the win. This would be a result of Sundowns’ current form versus a Bucs side battling for consistency, as well as the home ground advantage being in the Sea Robbers’ favour. On the face of it, I would immediately opt for the Sundowns’ win, but bearing in mind the huge advantage playing at home gives teams in the PSL, opting for the Away Draw No Bet at 19/20 looks the safer option. Pirates would need to put together their best performance since last playing Sundowns in August to get a win here. As for the away side, they would need to repeat the nightmare of that game and forget the good form they’ve built over the last three months to lose this.

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.