Our local football scribe takes a look at week 2 of the ABSA PSL. The action gets underway on Tuesday 13 September.
The Absa Premiership resumes midweek with some enticing matches lined up. On Tuesday, Roger de Sa will face former club Orlando Pirates at the Cape Town Stadium, while Bidvest Wits travel to Polokwane City and newly-promoted sides Highlands Park and Baroka FC square off.
All eyes will be on Kaizer Chiefs on Wednesday as Steve Komphela’s side take on Platinum Stars in a must-win game. On the same day, SuperSport United play host to high-flying Chippa United, while Mamelodi Sundowns look to kick-start their title defence with a win against Maritzburg United. Also, Free State Stars welcome Bloemfontein Celtic to Goble Park Stadium, and Cape Town City will face Golden Arrows in Durban.
Tuesday 13 September
Ajax Cape Town 21/10 | Draw 21/10 | Orlando Pirates 12/10
Ajax Cape Town played to a 1-1 draw with Baroka FC in their opening match. Nathan Paulse gave the Urban Warriors a ninth-minute lead from the penalty spot, but Richard Matloga’s header in the 52nd minute gave the newly-promoted side a point.
Roger de Sa will face a stern test against his former club on Tuesday. Orlando Pirates recorded a comfortable 3-1 victory over Golden Arrows in their season opener thanks to a hat-trick from Zimbabwean striker Tendai Ndoro. The Buccaneers have won back-to-back meetings with Ajax and they’re a top bet at 12/10.
Polokwane City 24/10 | Draw 21/10 | Bidvest Wits 11/10
Polokwane City suffered a 2-0 defeat away to newly-formed Cape Town City. Luc Eymael will be hoping for a positive response from his players when they host Bidvest Wits. The Clever Boys have looked superb this season, beating Soweto giants Chiefs and Pirates (MTN8) in their first two matches.
Gavin Hunt’s side are unbeaten in their last three clashes with AmaTuks, winning twice – consecutively. Both those wins came in 2016 with Hunt’s side winning 5-0 at home and 1-0 away. The Clever Boys are tipped confidently at 11/10.
Highlands Park 15/10 | Draw 21/10 | Baroka FC 17/10
Highlands Park’s long-awaited clash in the Absa Premiership will come against fellow newcomers Baroka FC. Allan Freese’s side returned to the top tier of South African club football for the first time in 24 years after winning the PSL Promotion Playoffs. The Lions of the North will be looking to kick-start their campaign with a win against last season’s NFD champions.
Baroka FC could only earn a draw against Ajax Cape Town in their opening match and Kgoloko Thobejane will be hoping for a better performance. These sides cancelled each other out in both meetings in the NFD last season. The draw is tipped at 21/10.
Wednesday 14 September
Kaizer Chiefs 7/10 | Draw 23/10 | Platinum Stars 37/10
Kaizer Chiefs have made a poor start to the season with latest reports suggesting that if things don’t improve quickly, Steve Komphela could face the sack. Amakhosi have to beat Platinum Stars here, a team that has won back-to-back meetings against the Sowetan club. Chiefs suffered a 2-1 defeat to Bidvest Wits in their season opener and were dumped out of the MTN8 by newly-formed Cape Town City. Komphela’s side have not won a competitive match since April 27. They have the quality needed to thrive but they need to improve quickly.
Platinum Stars clinched a 2-1 win over SuperSport United in their opening match, but that result followed with a 2-0 loss against Chippa United in the MTN8. A tight affair is expected, but Chiefs are tipped to come good.
SuperSport United 11/10 | Draw 21/10 | Chippa United 5/2
SuperSport United have had a poor start to the 2016/17 campaign and the pressure will be on Stuart Baxter to get the ball rolling. Matsatsantsa lost their opening PSL match 1-0 to Platinum Stars and were ousted 3-1 by Mamelodi Sundowns in the MTN8. Baxter has brought in former Kaizer Chiefs defender Tefu Mashamaite to shore up the defensive frailties. But the attacking players will need to take their chances in front of goal.
Chippa United are off to a perfect start having won their opening two matches. A 2-1 victory over Free State Stars in the Absa Premiership, followed with an impressive 2-0 win over Platinum Stars in the MTN8. SuperSport are unbeaten against Chippa in their last six meetings with four wins. Baxter’s men are tipped to pick up maximum points.
Free State Stars 13/10 | Draw 21/10 | Bloemfontein Celtic 21/10
Free State Stars suffered a 2-1 defeat away to Chippa United in their opening match in the Absa Premiership. Ea Lla Koto will be hoping to bounce back strongly against Bloemfontein Celtic. Stars have won their previous four meetings against Phunya Sele Sele which will give coach Denis Lavagne great confidence heading into the match.
After selling several of their key players when they were in negotiations to sell their franchise to Moroka Swallows, Stars have brought in a host of new players. Bloemfontein Celtic come off a 1-0 home defeat to Maritzburg United and Serame Letsoaka will be hoping for a better performance. The draw looks likely and offers good value at 21/10.
Golden Arrows 16/10 | Draw 2/1 | Cape Town City 17/10
Golden Arrows were on the receiving end of a Ndoro masterclass as the Zimbabwean striker netted a hat-trick to give Pirates a 3-1 win in their opening match. Clinton Larsen’s side will face another difficult test against high-flyers Cape Town City.
Eric Tinkler’s charges are on a two-game winning streak, at the time of writing. The City Boyz eased to a 2-0 victory over Polokwane City in their first PSL match thanks to strikes from Bhongolwethu Jayiya and Aubrey Ngoma. That result followed with a 1-0 win over Kaizer Chiefs in the MTN8 quarter-final, courtesy of a classy finish from Matt Sim. The City Boyz are great value at 17/10. Get on!
Maritzburg Utd 37/10 | Draw 22/10 | Mamelodi Sundowns 8/10
Maritzburg United began their Absa Premiership campaign with a narrow 1-0 win over Bloemfontein Celtic at the Dr. Molemela Stadium. Serame Letsoaka would have been pleased with his side’s performance, but they’ll need to be even better against reigning champions Mamelodi Sundowns.
Pitso Mosimane’s charges will be looking to kick-start their title defence with a win against the Team of Choice. Downs are unbeaten against Maritzburg United in their last six meetings with three wins on the spin. The Brazilians boast a squad full of quality and their attacking quartet of Sibusiso Vilakazi, Leonardo Castro, Keagan Dolly and Khama Billiat should wreak havoc on Maritzburg’s defence. Downs are tipped to edge their opponents.
TREBLE @ 7/1
Pirates Win 12/10
Wits Win 11/10
Sundowns Win 8/10
Written by Doctor’s Orders @Hollywoodbets