NFD 2017/18 - WEEK 14 PREVIEW

CT ALL STARS v UNIVERSITY of PRETORIA

Tuks have a chance to go 2nd on their own and close the gap to logleaders Highlands to just one point on Friday in Cape Town.  That might be easier said than done however as the Cape side beat Tuks with a Setelele goal last season. Added to that – All Stars won away last week while Tuks lost at home.

SUPER EAGLES v RICHARDS BAY

A 6 point battle at the bottom end of the NFD table at Goble Park on Saturday. Eagles are 3 points and two places better off than Richards Bay and have a better record in recent times as well. While the Free states rookies have lost their last two matches, the former Thanda have not won in 8 outings and have failed to score in their last 4 matches. The KZN side have not won on the road either so far this season. This will be the first meeting between the two sides.           

REAL KINGS v TSHAKHUMA TSHA MADZIHANDILA

Real Kings will look to bounce back to winning ways after suffering their 1st loss in 5 matches against provincial rivals Uthongathi last week. TTM FC jumped the KZN side after their last touch win over Tuks last week in Pretoria and can move into the top 5 with a win in KZN. Last season Kings beat the then Milano United 5 – 1. But that was a long time ago.

STELLENBOSCH FC v MBOMBELA UNITED FC

After posting their first win in 7 outings, Stellenbosch FC will be looking for their first ever home win against Mbombela on Saturday in their 4th meeting in the Cape. The Mpumalanga based side edged Mthatha Bucks last week to join Tuks and Cosmos in joint second on the log and 1 point clear of the Cape side. Mbombela will be well aware of their  1 – 4 defeat at the hands of Cosmos the last time they played away from home.

BLACK LEOPARDS v WITBANK SPURS

New Leopards coach Minnaert has put an unbeaten run of 3 matches together since landing in Limpopo and will look to stretch that further against a gritty Spurs side on Saturday. The Witbank side are unbeaten in 6 matches with their last four all being draws. They showed plenty of character last week to draw 2 – 2 with Cosmos after trailing 0 – 2 at halftime. The sides will meet for the 20th time since the 2005/06 season, with Leopards winning 10 times to the 8 victories of Spurs. Last season both sides won their home fixture.

MTHATHA BUCKS v HIGHLANDS PARK

Mthatha Bucks would love the same result against Highlands from 2 seasons ago which is when the two sides last met.  The home side won 1 – 0 on that occasion. But this is 2017 and the fortunes of the two clubs can hardly be compared. The Eastern Cape side have not won in their last 5 matches, losing 4 and drawing 1 and they have dropped from 5th to 12th on the log. Conversely, Highlands are unbeaten in 8 outings, have been on top of the log for the last 6 weeks and are four points clear of the chasing pack. The home side are still without a coach.          

UBUNTU CT FC v UTHONGATHI FC

Bottom of the table for the past 8 weeks, 3 points behind 14th placed Royal Eagles and without a home win this season is a precarious position for Ubuntu. Their opponent, KZN based ABC Motsepe League champions Uthongathi broke the shackles of a 5 matches winless streak to beat Kings in a KZN derby last week. However, the KZN side have not won on the road yet this season. This will be the first meeting between the two sides.

JOMO COSMOS v ROYAL EAGLES

Cosmos were left to reflect on what might have been against Spurs last week when they led 2 – 0 at halftime and leaked two second half goals to drop 2 points in Witbank. Royal Eagles might bear the brunt of that result as Cosmos will look to keep their unbeaten home record intact on Sunday. Cosmos have only beaten Eagles once in 4 home meetings and lost 1 – 2 against the KZN side at home last season. Cosmos however are unbeaten in their last 6 outings in which they have scored 14 goals, while their opponent have not won in 6 matches and have yet to keep a clean sheet this whole season.