This weekend, Bidvest Wits will look to retain their number one spot on the ABSA Premiership log standings after Orlando Pirates took a two-point lead during their Tuesday night 2-1 victory against Polokwane City. The Students host Bloemfontein Celtic which promises to be an uphill battle for both teams who have been a good form this season.
Former Roses United right-back, Tshegofatso Mashego has had his say on who he thinks will walk away with three points in the bag in the following matches. Do you agree with his choices?
Golden Arrows v Baroka FC (Premier Soccer League)
Match 1 Soccer 6 Pool 9 November S6 V3 P1
League Rankings: Golden Arrows 9th & Baroka FC 15th
Useful facts: For all their impressive run in the Telkom Knockout, which has seen them reach the semi-finals stage of the competition, Baroka FC have not had things go their way in the league. They suffered a 1-0 loss away to Bloemfontein Celtic in their last Absa Premiership encounter and it gets tougher as they look to overcome a Golden Arrows side also desperate for points, in Durban. That said, the cup victory over Mamelodi Sundowns will have done much to boost the morale in camp. It will be interesting to see how the team does under Wedson Nyirenda, who was on compassionate leave last weekend as Baroka did incredibly well under MDC coach Matsemela Thoka. If they win, it will bring with it a sense of belief, while if they continue to do badly in the league, it might be a signal that the players are struggling to grasp Nyirenda’s methods. Abafana Bes’thende have recorded the highest number of draws in the league so far (six) and will be keen to add to their two victories so far.
Tshegofatso Mashego: Golden Arrows win
Free State Stars v SuperSport United (Premier Soccer League)
Match 5 Soccer 6 Pool 9 November S6 V3 P1
League Rankings: Free State Stars 8th & SuperSport United 5th
Useful facts: SuperSport United, still licking their wounds from a Telkom Knockout exit at the hands of Kaizer Chiefs, will have it all to do against a stubborn Free State Stars side that is seeking to move up the league table. Matsatsantsa a Pitori seem to be somewhat struggling to find their mojo, with their last league match, against Golden Arrows, ending in a draw. Some of the club’s key players, like Thuso Phala and Evans Rusike, have been off form and a big performance from them will be needed if they are to come out of Goble Park with maximum points. But they are incredibly sitting in fifth position on the log and definitely within touching distance of the log leaders. Ea Lla Koto, though, need to be ruthless, as they have only scored 10 goals in 12 league outings, but they will be put to the test against a SuperSport defence that has conceded eight goals in nine league matches.
Tshegofatso Mashego: Free State Stars win
Bidvest Wits v Bloemfontein Celtic (Premier Soccer League)
Match 6 Soccer 6 Pool 9 November S6 V3 P1
League Rankings: Bidvest Wits 1st & Bloemfontein Celtic 3rd
Useful facts: It’s a top-of-the-table clash where perhaps the neutrals will give to Bidvest Wits on account of home ground advantage and all-round star quality. Gavin Hunt’s charges would like nothing more than opening up the gap between them and the chasing pack on the log standings, with the league’s halfway mark in sight. However, Siwelele, as many opposition teams have found out so far this season, will be tricky customers. Recent games between the two sides have been hard-fought affairs, with only one goal scored, and this promises to be no different. Simon Murray will surely look to keep the Celtic defence busy, but Steve Komphela’s charges have only conceded five goals so far. This will likely be another low-scoring affair.
Tshegofatso Mashego: Bloemfontein Celtic win