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Baroka FC vs Maritzburg United Preview & Tips: Goals expected between the two surprise packages in South Africa
Baroka FC under interim management look to derail Maritzburg’s continental push at the Peter Mokaba Stadium
Baroka FC host third-placed Maritzburg United at the Peter Mokaba Stadium on Sunday with the visitors looking to cap off a remarkable season by finishing in the top three and securing a place in the CAF Confederations Cup. Baroka are currently in eight position and have prioritised a top five finish.
Baroka FC caretaker coach McDonald Makhubedu recently revealed that the clubs owners are targeting a top five finish in their second season in the Premier Soccer League. Baroka’s maiden top-flight campaign last season saw them finish second-from-bottom in 15th place but stay up as they dominated the post-season promotion-relegation play-offs.
Bakgaga finished with 28 points last season but this term already have 33 points with four matches still to play. Star forward Gift Motupa will return to parent club Orlando Pirates at the end of the season after a successful loan spell that has seen him bag eight league goals. Motupa is just three goals behind joint top scorers Percy Tau and Rodney Ramagalela.
Baroka’s recent run has seen them go winless in their last three games in all competitions with defeats against Kaizer Chiefs and Mamelodi Sundowns.
The Team of Choice go into the weekend on the back of a frustrating 1-1 draw at home against Cape Town City, with Maritzburg leading for most of the game before being pegged back in added time. It was a damaging result that all but ended their slim title hopes as they are now seven points off the leaders with just four games left.
Maritzburg have been the surprise package of the 2017-18 season. Playing high intensity‚ high movement and high impact football under the PSL’s youngest coach Fadlu Davids and a squad with an average of 23.3, Maritzburg boast some of the leagues brightest young talent. Many of their young stars such as Lebogang Maboe‚ Fortune Makaringe‚ Siphesihle Ndlovu and Bandile Shandu have caught the eye this season.
The Team of Choice are one of the form teams of South African football at the moment losing just once in their last nine games in all competitions.
Baroka’s record at home in the PSL has been impressive this season with Bakgaga losing just three times at home, with defeats coming against heavyweight sides Kaizer Chiefs and Sundowns. Striker Motupa remains the main threat with his power and pace which might be too much for a largely inexperienced Maritzburg backline.
The Team of Choice have been steady in recent weeks but have lost two of their last three games on the road, critically they have won every fixture they have played against Baroka, making them firm favourites for a win.
- Maritzburg United have won all 3 matches against Baroka, scoring 7 and conceding 1 goal (South African PSL).
- Maritzburg United have lost just 1 of their last 9 matches, scoring in 8 matches (All competitions).
- Baroka FC have scored in 9 of their last 10 matches (All competitions).
- Baroka FC have the league’s joint worst defence, shipping in 32 goals (South African PSL).
This fixture always produces a winner and is notorious for goals. Baroka are looking to finish the season on a high by targeting a top five finish, but might come unstuck against a very energetic and young Maritzburg side who are desperate to finish what has been a remarkable season with a place in the CAF Confederations Cup.
Expect goals in this one with The Team of Choice edging it.
Best Bet: Maritzburg United win at 2.62
Over / Under Bet: Over 2.5 goals at 2.37