Football lovers worldwide will be joyful with the return of club football, following the brief interval for AFCON and World Cup qualifiers.
The South African NFD got off to a flyer before the international break. There were one or two upsets, but no more than the usual. Surprisingly enough, Mthatha Bucks head into round two at the summit of the table after claiming the biggest victory of the opening week, whipping Stellenbosch FC 3-1. There are a few cracker matchups on show this weekend, so let’s get to it!
Saturday 10 September
Black Leopards 13/10 | Draw 21/10 | Jomo Cosmos 2/1
Black Leopards and Jomo Cosmos do battle on Saturday afternoon in what looks to be a mouth-watering encounter. Neither team were successful in the opening round of fixtures, with Black Leopards falling to a 2-1 defeat at AmaZulu and Jomo Cosmos being held to a 1-1 draw on home soil.
Black Leopards have won the last three meetings on their ground against Jomo Cosmos, scoring five goals and conceding just once. Lidoda Duvha showed impressive work ethic and determination last time out – despite falling short - and are well worth a punt at 13/10.
Witbank Spurs 9/10 | Draw 22/10 | Mthatha Bucks 32/10
Witbank Spurs were full value for their victory at Milano United prior to the international break, edging a 2-1 win. Now, they will turn their attention to the current log-leaders, Mthatha Bucks.
Last season I would have opted for the Witbank win with ease, but after Mthatha Bucks battered Stellenbosch FC (Vasco da Gama) 3-1 in gameweek one, anything is possible. They proved they have goals in them, but breaching Witbank’s organized backline won’t be easy. Siyavutha pulled the double over Bucks last season, and are tipped to make it three in a row.
FC Cape Town 9/10 | Draw 22/10 | Magesi FC 29/10
FC Cape Town will welcome newly-promoted Magesi FC to the NNK Rugby Stadium on Saturday afternoon. The African Beasts got off to moderate start, earning a well-deserved 1-1 draw away to Jomo Cosmos.
Magesi FC disappointed last time out, falling to a 2-1 defeat in their own backyard against Thanda Royal Zulu. They are still finding their feet in the first division and that could take a while. Another home win will do it for me.
Stellenbosch FC 16/10 | Draw 2/1 | University of Pretoria 16/10
Stellenbosch will take on University of Pretoria on Saturday, with the latter looking to recover from their 3-1 defeat at Mthatha Bucks in the opening round of the season, while AmaTuks earned a well-deserved 2-1 victory at home against Cape Town All Stars.
University of Pretoria have won the last three meetings between the sides, scoring nine goals and conceding just twice. A tight encounter is expected, but AmaTuks are tipped to nip the win.
Mbombela United 13/10 | Draw 21/10 | Milano United AFC 2/1
Mbombela and Milano will go toe-to-toe, with both teams eager to clinch their first victory of the season, after the pair failed to hit the ground round prior to the international break.
Mbombela lost 2-1 at Santos, while Milano were beaten by the same scoreline in their own backyard against Witbank Spurs. The home side won both meetings 1-0 last season and with home advantage are tipped to come out on top yet again.
Real Kings FC 17/10 | Draw 2/1 | Santos 16/10
Newly-promoted Real Kings will face Santos at the Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium on Saturday. The Natalians will be desperately hungry to claim their first ever victory in the first division, while Santos will be looking to make it consecutive wins after edging Mbombela United 2-1 last time out.
Real Kings did extremely well to salvage a point away to last season’s title-chasers Royal Eagles, holding the fellow Durbanites to a 1-1 stalemate. However, Santos will still be high on confidence following their victory over Mbombela, making the draw the likeliest result.
Sunday 11 September
Thanda Royal Zulu 11/10 | Draw 21/10 | Royal Eagles 23/10
On Sunday, Thanda Royal Zulu will lock horns with Royal Eagles in a KwaZulu-Natal derby. Amabhubesi impressed last time out with a hard-fought 2-1 victory away to Magesi FC, while Royal Eagles disappointed, as they were held to a 1-1 draw on home soil against Real Kings.
When these two teams go it, home advantage doesn’t seem to play much of a role in terms of the outcome. A heated contest is on the cards and the draw is the verdict.
Cape Town All Stars 14/10 | Draw 21/10 | AmaZulu 19/10
AmaZulu will travel to Cape Town All Stars on Sunday afternoon, looking to make in two wins on the bounce following their 2-1 home win against Black Leopards last time out. All Stars on the other hand, failed to make a positive start to the campaign, going down 2-1 at University of Pretoria.
AmaZulu won this fixture 2-0 last season and are well worth a punt at 19/10 to take maximum points here. The away win is the way to go.
Written by Aaron Crowie @Hollywoodbets.