PSL Relegation battle still unclear until the last matches




The battle for survival in the Premier Soccer League will go down to the wire this season following Saturday’s results.

There is so much to play for with one more round to play next week Saturday and the bottom five teams on the PSL standings are not safe.

Baroka FC climbed up to 12th spot with 28 points despite losing 3-1 to Wits away.

However, Bakgaga are two points above Maritzburg, who are occupying 16th place which is the automatic relegation spot.

Chippa, Free State Stars and Black Leopards are level on points (27) – sitting on 13th, 14th and 15th spots respectively.

All eyes will be on the clash between Baroka and Maritzburg at the Peter Mokaba Stadium as far as the relegation battle is concerned.

The Team of Choice seem to have hit form at the right time having secured two impressive back-to-back wins against Black Leopards and SuperSport United.

Eric Tinkler’s Maritzburg, who have scored five goals in their last two games, proved that they had the mental strength to pull off an away win when they defeated Leopards in Polokwane.

Baroka are struggling at home having won once in their last nine matches in their own backyard and they are most likely to suffer yet another defeat in Polokwane as Maritzburg are their bogey team.

The two teams have met five times in the league and Maritzburg have recorded four victories compared to Baroka’s one.

Maritzburg, who have come out on top each time they have faced Bakgaga in Polokwane, look set to continue their dominance over their hosts.

The Team of Choice would then avoid automatic relegation to the National First Division (NFD) as they leapfrog Bakgaga, who would be hoping for favourable results elsewhere.

Chippa United, who are placed 13th on the table, will play host to a Chiefs team, who are desperate for a victory in order to secure a top-eight finish.

Amakhosi will have a psychological advantage over the Chilli Boys as they recently thumped them 4-2 in a Nedbank Cup semi-final clash.

The teams are most likely to match each other on the day and settle for a draw because there is not much to separate the two sides at the moment.

The Chilli Boys have proved that they are no pushovers against Amakhosi especially at home, and Chiefs’ cup pedigree gave the Soweto giants the edge in their recent clash.

This time it will be a league game and Chippa will fancy their chances against Amakhosi, who are out of form and winless in their last four away PSL games.

Black Leopards, who are sitting in 15th spot on the log, will host a Cape Town City side who are undefeated in their last four games and includes two away wins.

City could still qualify for next season’s Caf Confederation Cup if they finish third and they will be looking to add to Leopards’ woes with the Limpopo side having lost its last two home games.

Furthermore, Leopards are leaking goals, especially at home having conceded seven in their last five games in Thohoyandou, while City are a free-scoring side having netted eight goals in their last four games.

Lastly, 14th-placed Free State Stars will wrap up their campaign against title-chasing Sundowns, who have a very good record against the former.

The Brazilians are undefeated in their last 17 games against Ea Lla Koto having won their last three away games to the Free State side.

Sundowns will definitely come out all guns blazing as they look set to continue their dominance over Stars as this could be a title decider.

 






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