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DSTV Prem Weekend Review – Winners And Losers By OptaJabu

Check out our winners and losers from the DSTV Premiership weekend action by OptaJabu, a must-read on a Monday.

Check out our winners and losers from the DSTV Premiership by OptaJabu.

Stuart Baxter And His Push For 2nd – Winner

The concerns of Kaizer Chiefs fans will not be slain by a win over Orlando Pirates all of a sudden, but boy was that a big victory for Stuart Baxter. His team should have been 2-0 up at the break (that hasn’t happened in a derby in 10 years), but they showed incredible resolve to retake the lead after being pegged back. This helped them secure a 2nd league double over Pirates in three seasons, something that had happened only once in the previous 23 seasons. Baxter’s Chiefs remain 26 points behind Sundowns, so the title is close to improbable at the moment, but this victory will go a long way towards securing a CAF position come season end. They have the momentum:

2.22 – No team has averaged more points per game since the November international break than Baxter’s Chiefs (2.22).

Dan Malesela’s Gallants Renaissance – Winner

Dan Malesela has averaged 2 points per game in the league he joined Marumo Gallants last November (24 in 12), with only Kaizer Chiefs (2.22) having a better ppg ratio since then. Ndabayithethwa Ndlondlo proved to be his trusted lieutenant, netting his 5th goal of the year (4 penalties), but that was enough to prolong their incredible turnaround to a season.

7 – No team has won as many games as Marumo Gallants since Dan Malesela took charge in November (7).

Royal AM’s Resiliance – Winner

Another Royal AM game, another late goal, and more steam added in the push towards 2nd. Thwihli Thwahla have scored 13 goals in the final 15-minutes of matches this season, 

more than any other team. But the true value comes in the 90th+ minute goals, without which they would be 12th on the table.

8 – Royal AM have scored 8 goals in the 90th minute or later in league matches this season, more than any other side, with those late goals securing them 11 points.

Baroka’s Survival Chances – Winner

Baroka remains rooted at the bottom of the table, but only by goal difference. There should have been more noise made about their bottom-of-the-table clash against TS Galaxy over the weekend because defeat for Baroka would have left them with a mountain to climb. They still have the mountain to climb, but one that is more Kilimanjaro than it is Everest.

Maritzburg & Ernst Middendorp – Winner

If you could pick two results to save your season, a win away at the defending champions would be first. A win at home to the defending champions would be second, and Maritzburg did just that. Their win over Sundowns may have been clouded by refereeing controversies, but Ernst Middendorp would have slept as a happy man on Saturday night. The win gave them some breathing space in a relegation race where the bottom six teams are separated by just eight points.

Tinkler & City’s New Year – Winner

Despite being knocked out of the Nedbank Cup in their very first game of the year, 2022 has been kind to Eric Tinkler.

8 – Only Marumo Gallants (9) have won more points in 2022 than City (8)

Orlando Pirates – Loser

It wasn’t that Pirates were poor in the Soweto derby. Mandla Ncikazi’s team competed with Chiefs until the last minute and were inches away from securing a point. They outshot Chiefs on the day and created the better chances, but the fact remains that this is a struggling team:

​​1 – Only once before in PSL history (26 points in 2016/17) have Orlando Pirates won fewer points after 22 games of a PSL season than the 32 they have now.

No team has recovered more points from losing positions than Pirates this season, but on the big derby day, they were found wanting.

PSL Officiating – Loser

Once again, more inexplicable refereeing decisions have left supporters disillusioned. It’s one thing to miss a tight call once in a game; it’s another to consistently miss many easy calls on a whole weekend of PSL action.

TS Galaxy & Red Cards – Loser

Ill-discipline is the last thing you want when involved in a relegation battle:

8 – TS Galaxy have now received eight red cards in the league this season, more than any other side. Update.

Arrows Give Away A Lead – Loser

The last time Arrows scored so early in a game was in May 2007. They’ve never lost when scoring in the opening 5 minutes of a PSL match, so this must be disappointing for Seema.

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