Our writer previews the South African NFD matchups gameweek 11 of the 2016/17 campaign.
International football is finally done and dusted for the year and we can now focus all of our attention on club soccer. The NFD returns this weekend with a full set of cracking contests, including an eye-catching KwaZulu-Natal derby between AmaZulu and Thanda Royal Zulu.
There is plenty of money to be made this weekend, we just need to find the value and strike. With eight NFD matches to look forward to, let’s not waste any more time and get stuck in!
Saturday 19 November
University of Pretoria 8/10 | Draw 23/10 | Magesi FC 3/1
Before the international break, the University of Pretoria fell to a 2-1 defeat away to Thanda Royal Zulu, making it three losses from their last four matches. Newly promoted Magesi FC have been on a downward spiral as they are without a win in their last eight matches, scoring a measly two goals and conceding 15 times.
Five points separate the teams with AmaTuks placed 11th on the standings, while Magesi FC find themselves rooted to the foot of the table. Neither side inspires much confidence but the University of Pretoria are bound to find a winning formula. With home advantage, back Shaun Bartlett and his men to come out on top.
Black Leopards 11/10 | Draw 21/10 | Mbombela United 22/10
Black Leopards and Mbombela are tied on 12 points with three wins from 10 games each. Black Leopards have lost back-to-back matches, while their opponents have lost two consecutive matches on the road.
Lidoda Duvha seems to be scoring plenty of goals, but their problem lies in their defence. Mbombela on the other hand, lack a certain cutting edge and drive. With that in mind, the draw looks the likely result.
FC Cape Town 13/10 | Draw 21/10 | Stellenbosch FC 18/10
FC Cape Town will take on one of the league’s in-form teams as Stellenbosch FC make the short trip to the NNK Rugby Stadium. The hosts were just about finding their feet before the international break and will hope any momentum built has not faded away.
Stellenbosch FC are undefeated in their last four matches with three victories, but a disappointing 1-1 home draw against Cape Town All Stars last time out caused them to lose a bit of ground on log-leaders, Thanda Royal Zulu.
The African Beasts are unbeaten against Stellenbosch FC in the last five meetings, including three wins on the spin. The home win looks worth a punt.
Milano United 11/10 | Draw 21/10 | Santos 22/10
Milano United and Santos have been involved in a few cagey encounters in the past and this is likely to be no different. The home sides are just a point above their opponents in 13th place on the table and will be eager to stretch the gap.
Santos have proven to be the draw specialists this campaign, playing to seven stalemates from a possible 10, including five on the trot. They seem to lack a winning mentality but it’s obvious they are desperate not to lose. Another draw is on the cards.
Mthatha Bucks 13/10 | Draw 21/10 | Royal Eagles 18/10
Mthatha Bucks have put their foot on the brake since making such a bright start to the season. They are winless in three matches, but have drawn all of those ties and will be eager to return to winning ways.
Free-scoring Royal Eagles will look to maintain their unbeaten run of six matches without defeat, including four victories. It’s on home soil where they have really thrived, but the Durbanites are buzzing with confidence and are tipped to do enough to claim maximum points.
Sunday 20 November
Cape Town All Stars 17/10 | Draw 21/10 | Witbank Spurs 14/10
Cape Town All Stars are placed second from bottom on the log with just one win from 10 matches. Witbank have made a good turnaround in form in recent weeks, bagging three wins from their last four matches.
Witbank edged this fixture 1-0 last season and judging by the form guide are more than capable of doing so yet again. The away win should be backed.
Jomo Cosmos 11/10 | Draw 21/10 | Real Kings FC 22/10
Jomo Cosmos will welcome Real Kings FC to Olen Park Stadium on Sunday afternoon. Jomo Sono’s men are unbeaten at home with three wins and two draws from five games, while the new boys on the block are unscathed in their last five matchups.
This is a contest that will go down to the wire. However, with home advantage, Jomo Cosmos will prove too strong for Real Kings FC.
AmaZulu 13/10 | Draw 21/10 | Thanda Royal Zulu 18/10
AmaZulu and Thanda Royal Zulu will square off in a KwaZulu-Natal derby in arguably the NFD matchup of the weekend. Usuthu have been in horrendous form with five defeats from their last six matches.
Table-toppers Thanda Royal Zulu remain the only team in the league yet to taste defeat, scoring an impressive 25 goals, while conceding just nine times. Nonetheless, AmaZulu will most likely be rejuvenated from that international break and are tipped to hold out for a point.
TREBLE @ 10/1
University of Pretoria Win (8/10)
FC Cape Town Win (13/10)
Royal Eagles Win (18/10)
Written by Aaron Crowie @Hollywoodbets