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DStv Premiership: Gameweek 3 Preview

Njabulo Blom and Themba Zwane

The first international break of the season certainly didn’t disappoint, with Bafana Bafana uniting the nation by claiming two positive results. While we’re in the feel-good mood, domestic action returns to add the cherry on top of the icing, on top of the cake. There’s plenty of enticing matchups to look forward to, including the ‘original’ Soweto derby between Orlando Pirates and Swallows, while the highlight fixture of the round is in Pretoria, where Mamelodi Sundowns host title hopefuls, Kaizer Chiefs. With so much action to sink our teeth into, let’s hope the return of DStv Premiership football leaves us with joy and excitement.

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Saturday 11 September

TS Galaxy 17/10
Draw 21/10
Golden Arrows 16/10
(15:00)

It’s been an indifferent start to the new season for TS Galaxy, who are one of three teams yet to score this campaign. The one positive highlight for the Rockets is having one of their brightest young talents in Ethan Brooks featuring for Bafana Bafana and gaining international experience. Golden Arrows have been hot and cold this term, winning and lose one apiece from their opening two matches. They have, however, managed to hold Sundowns to a draw in the first leg of the MTN8 semi-finals before the break. My money is on a stalemate here.

Orlando Pirates 17/20
Draw 9/4
Swallows 33/10
(15:00)

The international break didn’t bring much joy to Orlando Pirates. Despite the fact that most of their players will be well-rested after being snubbed, Pirates’ Ghanaian goalkeeper Richard Ofori was taken off in the game against Bafana Bafana on Monday evening due to injury. It looked painful so its likely that the former Maritzburg United shot-stopper could miss this tie. Swallows are yet to taste defeat this season and have kept clean sheets in both of their league matches played thus far. The Dube Birds also knocked Orlando Pirates out of the MTN8 in the first game of their season last month. It may seem common with Swallows, but I’ll be backing a draw in this encounter.

Baroka FC 19/20
Draw 22/10
Maritzburg United 3/1
(17:00)

It’s been a horrid start to the season for Maritzburg United, who have lost both of their opening two matches. To make matters worse, the Team of Choice lost to Golden Arrows in the KZN derby, which will be a hard pill to swallow, then followed that up with another setback against Sekhukhune United, losing 2-0 at home. Baroka eased past Marumo Gallants in their opening tie, before being humbled by Kaizer Chiefs in Johannesburg. I fancy Baroka in this tie.

Sekhukhune United 13/10
Draw 21/10
Stellenbosch 21/10
(17:00)

Stellenbosch have been one of the top performers of the season after two matches, earning four points, beating TS Galaxy after holding Orlando Pirates to a 2-2 draw in Soweto. Waseem Isaacs and Judas Moseamedi have enjoyed a decent strike partnership up front, with each of them scoring a goal to their name so far. Sekhukhune United’s Chibuike Ohizu has been just as deadly in front of goal after banging in a brace to give his side a 2-0 victory over Maritzburg United. However, my gut feeling says Stellies claim maximum points.

Sunday 12 September

Royal AM 2/1
Draw 2/1
Chippa United 14/10
(15:00)

Royal AM have undoubtedly been the most talked about team in the DStv Premiership this campaign. The KZN-based side, owned by MaMkhize, have been in the public eye for all the wrong reasons, and you get the feeling that things could get worse before they get better. Gavin Hunt seems to have instilled his philosophy at Chippa United, with the Chilli Boys looking identical to what a Hunt-coached team would usually look like – especially when it comes to showing their ugly side. Still, they know how to grind results and that’s the reason Hunt is so successful as a coach. My money is on Chippa United here with the utmost confidence.

Sundowns 14/10
Draw 2/1
Kaizer Chiefs 2/1
(17:00)

The final game of the weekend sees two of Mzansi’s biggest heavyweights take centre stage on Sunday at Loftus Versfeld Stadium. Amakhosi will be looking to put an end to Downs’ dominance as they look to make use of the new additions they have made to the team this season. Despite losing to Sundowns already in the MTN8 this term, Stuart Baxter will know that he still has the firepower to pose a threat to Masandawana and was offered new ideas by national team head coach Hugo Broos. In Bafana Bafana’s encounter against Ghana, Njabulo Ngcobo made an appearance as a substitute in the defensive midfield role, and with the faith shown in Daniel Cardoso and Eric Mathoho, it could be something to keep an eye on in the future. In saying that, with Phathutshedzo Nange and Cole Alexander in the anchoring role, its hard to see Ngcobo playing ahead of them as well. Sundowns can form arguably the first and second best team in the league with the amount of superstars they have in their ranks. With that squad, Downs still haven’t been able to take maximum points from their opening two matches, drawing against Chippa United in their most recent league encounter, before drawing in Durban against Golden Arrows in the first leg of the MTN8 semi-finals. I’m going to stick my neck out here and back Kaizer Chiefs to win or draw at 9/20.

Tuesday 14 September

AmaZulu 14/10
Draw 2/1
SuperSport United 2/1
(17:00)

AmaZulu have a dismal start to their campaign, based on the standards they set last season. Usuthu haven’t scored a single goal this term and have picked up just one point from their opening two encounters. SuperSport United are the current log-leaders of the DStv Premiership after two matches, humbling Golden Arrows before the FIFA break, beating the Durban-based side 3-1 in Pretoria. With plenty of value on SuperSport United, I fancy them to get the job done in Durban.

TREBLE @ 11/2
Baroka FC Win 19/20
Chippa United Win 14/10
Kaizer Chiefs Win/Draw 9/20

Written by Jesse Nagel