Absa Premiership: Week 3 Preview

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

In typical PSL fashion, we are only two games into the new season and no team has managed to win both of their opening encounters, just proving the competitive nature of this league. We’ve got a full line up of fixtures over the course of Tuesday and Wednesday, before a cup and international break. This provides a great opportunity for punters to play some high profile multiples during the midweek.

Tuesday 25 August

Mpumalanga Black Aces  33/10
Draw  22/10
Mamelodi Sundowns  8/10
Aces will be rather chuffed with how things have started so far, albeit without any major challenges. Their home draw to fancied SuperSport United will provide them with good confidence going into another home fixture on Tuesday evening. The opposition will be a lot tougher, and although Sundowns had to score four to put Wits to bed on the weekend, they’ll be just as prolific on the road as they are at home. Aces were averaging over a goal conceded per game last season and this weakness, particularly against a side of Sundowns’ calibre, can be dangerous, and in my mind will be the telling point of this fixture. If Cuthbert Malajila can do to Aces what he did against Wits, we could see Sundowns walking away with the points here. They show some value as the away side and 8/10 is enough to tempt me into tipping the straight win. 

Polokwane City  37/10
Draw  23/10
Kaizer Chiefs  7/10
After an inspired 3-2 win over Celtic on opening day, some pundits gave Polokwane some hope when they travelled to face AmaTuks. But the 3-0 drubbing they received would’ve replaced any hope with the same doubts most have about their chances this season. Chiefs, on the other hand, were out to prove that their meek performances under new coach Steve Komphela were the start of more explosive action to come, and they proved just that by romping to a 4-0 win at home to Free State Stars. They hit the road again, but in the light of the two aforementioned games from last weekend, the writing could be on the wall already here. Polokwane have never beaten the Amakhosi in the PSL and this trend is highly likely to continue. Take the away win at 7/10.

Chippa United  13/10
Draw  2/1
University of Pretoria  2/1
Chippa showed last week what a lot of followers will be worried about. How long can they last in the top flight? It may be premature but the 4-1 loss away to a rather unfocused Pirates side says a lot. Their winless streak continues and if they can’t produce points against a side like Tuks on Tuesday night, their fate as relegation candidates may be sealed already. AmaTuks produced a morale boosting 3-0 win on the weekend, albeit to Polokwane, but this will give them a certain boost when they travel to Port Elizabeth to face Chippa. They too don’t have the proudest recent form, but if there’s a chance to collect points on the road this season, they couldn’t have asked for better timing. The bookies have priced this one up closely, but an Away/Draw Double Chance at 11/20, giving AmaTuks all the opportunity to leave with points, is the way to go here.

Wednesday 26 August

Ajax Cape Town  7/10
Draw  23/10
Free State Stars  37/10
Ajax kept their stout home record intact with a convincing 3-1 win whilst hosting Maritzburg United. They keep home ground advantage going into this fixture and entertain a Stars side sitting rock bottom without a point to their name. Sure, it’s only two games in and  they’ve faced some decent opposition, but the longer they take to get going, the more difficult it will be for them psychologically. This is another tough test for them and sadly it’s one that I don’t see them coming out of with any points to show. Despite having never lost to Ajax at home, the almost reverse applies in Cape Town for Stars, having to go back to 2010 to find their last away win in this matchup. Look to more goals from Prince Nxumalo and Ajax, and another home win for the Urban Warriors.

Platinum Stars  12/10
Draw  21/10
Golden Arrows  21/10
Dikwena played to a second draw from two against Celtic on Sunday afternoon. They won’t be too disappointed with that, especially being on the road and especially considering they trailed at half-time. They’re back home again and face PSL returnees, Golden Arrows, who will be a little upset with their draw on the weekend to Jomo Cosmos. Out of the two promoted sides, you fancied Abafana Bes’thende to produce the goods and walk away with their second win. They hit the road to face a Stars side that were weak at home last season, and in fact the last time these sides met in the league it was this exact scenario with Arrows coming out 4-1 winners. If they can keep the faith and try and repeat that result, we could be in for a feisty clash. I’d be surprised if it were that convincing this time out but it puts the result into question. Both sides will be eager for the points and for that reason I’m going for Both Teams To Score, not a pick I’m usually confident in making when it comes to PSL.

SuperSport United  5/10
Draw  28/10
Jomo Cosmos  5/1
SuperSport earned a point away from home on the weekend when facing Black Aces. It’s probably the least they would’ve wanted from the game but it also let new signing, Dean Furman, get a full ninety minutes in his new colours. They host a Cosmos side that have scraped draws in their first two PSL games this year and ideally would be wanting the same from this fixture too. They’ve yet to register a top flight goal and whilst this earns credibility for their defensive work, a habit of negative football can cost you in this league. SuperSport, at home, averaged 1.5 goals a game last season, so unless Cosmos find some goals soon, this could easily be their first defeat of the season. I’m continuing with the train of thought and putting my pennies squarely in the home side’s favour. Three points for Matsatsantsa, please. Coming right up.

Bidvest Wits  6/10
Draw  5/2
Maritzburg United  9/2
Despite going down to Sundowns on the weekend, Wits showed plenty fight away from home against a top notch side. They return to their beloved university grounds to host Maritzburg United, who have just a single point to their name this season. They’ve never done too well against Wits, who did the double over them last season. That being said, if any side is going to cause an upset, it’s the KZN lads who earned themselves permanent status in the PSL. Gavin Hunt will have his side well fired up for this one and will certainly hope this ends in three points earned, as opposed to two points dropped. Predictably I’m going for a home win here. It will probably be tight, but with Maritzburg having just a single goal to their name this season, and last season averaging just a goal a game away from home, it seems the most likely possibility.

Bloemfontein Celtic  33/10
Draw  22/10
Orlando Pirates  8/10
Celtic haven’t got off to the greatest start. Their loss to Polokwane on opening weekend, in hindsight, looks worse than initially thought, and they would’ve wanted more from their 1-1 draw to Dikwena on the weekend. They host Pirates, who won in convincing fashion a week back in the league, as well as in the Confed Cup against Leopards on the weekend. Despite Pirates being by far the superior side they haven’t flourished when travelling to Bloemfontein in recent times. In fact they haven’t won away from home in this fixture since 2008, providing some confidence to the hosts. The end of this rut could be tomorrow, but in case it isn’t, don’t throw everything into this one. In multiples I’m playing it safe with an Under 2.5 Goals bet, but if you’re wanting to have a strike on the game alone, look for cover with Pirates/Draw Double Chance.

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