Last week’s instalment of NPL NSW had plenty of action and Take That Game Back are here to take you through every game in Round 7 as we head towards the business end of the competition.
Manly United vs North Shore Mariners
Friday 11th September 7:30pm @ Cromer Park
Manly have announced themselves to the league with a thumping 5-2 win over reigning champions APIA Leichhardt last weekend and they’ll be looking to make that back to back wins when they host struggling North Shore Mariners this weekend.
The goals were flowing at Cromer Park last weekend as much as the beer at the local breweries when Manly hosted APIA and a dominant display from start to finish was exactly what was needed to send a statement to the rest of the league. The big win over the Tigers bumped Manly up the table and a win over the Mariners this weekend could push them even further and chuck them into finals contention.
Despite plucky draws over the last few weeks the Mariners have struggled to find their feet in the top tier since achieving promotion last season with the North Shore club failing to register a win so far. They will be hoping that will all change this weekend when they face their local rivals as they desperately need to put some runs on the board.
Prediction: Manly United 3 def North Shore Mariners 0
Blacktown City vs Sydney FC
Friday 11th September 7:30pm @ Lily Homes Stadium
Sydney’s youngsters have shocked everyone this year by staking their place in the competition early on as they sit in 3rd place and they’ll be looking to surge to the top of the table this weekend when they travel out west this weekend to play the winless Blacktown.
A disappointing trip to Albert Butler Memorial Park left Blacktown City winless after six rounds and the Western Sydney based side are desperate for a win as another week of dropped points almost certainly knocks them out of the finals race.
Sydney struggled last weekend as they went down to Sydney United at Edensor Park. Youngsters Wood and Mostofi managed to get themselves on the scoresheet but it wasn’t enough to get a result and the Sky Blues will be itching to get a result against a struggling Blacktown. Expect hotshot Patrick Wood to get himself involved this weekend and add to his impressive tally of 7 goals in 6 games.
Prediction: Sydney FC 3 def Blacktown City 2
Marconi Stallions vs Mt Druitt Town Rangers
Saturday 12th September 4pm @ Marconi Stadium
One Western Sydney side will host another as Mt Druitt travel to Marconi in this mid table clash. Mt Druitt are on a red hot run of form at the moment, undefeated in their last 3 matches and they’ll be hoping that this carries over to this weekend’s game as a win over Marconi will put them on track for a finals place.
Marconi are sitting in the same boat — a win this weekend could push them up the table and into finals contention. The former NSL powerhouse will have some extra motivation to grab the 3 points this weekend after a narrow loss to league leaders Sydney Olympic.
Marconi forward Anthony Frangie will be the key player this weekend, having scored 4 goals in 6 appearances this season and the Mt Druitt defence will have some trouble handling him as he looks to improve to that goal tally.
Prediction: Marconi Stallions 2 draw Mt Druitt Town Rangers 2
Sydney Olympic vs APIA Leichhardt
Sunday 13th September 3pm @ Lambert Park
The league leaders take on the current champions as these former NSL giants go head to head in what’s sure to be a thriller. The Belmore-based Olympic will be looking to increase the gap between themselves and the rest of the league while APIA will be desperately looking for their 2nd win of the season in a last ditch attempt to defend their trophy.
Olympic pulled off a gutsy win last week to beat rivals Marconi in a 2-1 thriller and it was new signing Fabio Ferreira who was the difference. Ferreira came off the bench and snagged himself a goal to secure the win. He’ll be looking to do the same this weekend as his side will do battle with the struggling Tigers but they won’t go down without a fight.
APIA succumbed to yet another loss last weekend after being clobbered by Manly United 5-2 and the champions will have a point to prove this weekend as they take on the red hot Olympic. Fail to do so and it almost certainly means that APIA will play no role in this year’s finals series after collecting a mere 4 points from 6 games so far in the campaign.
Prediction: Sydney Olympic 3 def APIA Leichhardt 1
Sydney United 58 vs Western Sydney Wanderers
Sunday 13th September 3pm @ Sydney United Sports Centre
It’s another battle of the West this weekend as Sydney United host Western Sydney Wanderers and Sydney United will be salivating at the thought of a win potentially putting them in first place with only a few rounds left to play.
United pulled off a mammoth win last weekend where they defeated Sydney FC 4-2 and they’ll look for more of the same this weekend. They’ll look to key forward Patrick Antelmi to secure them the win who is boasting an impressive 4 goals in 2 games.
The new kids on the block finally got off the mark last weekend with a big 3-1 win over Rockdale and another 3 points would send them on their way to playing finals football.
They’ll look to young gun Kosta Grozos to propel them towards a win this weekend as the explosive winger recorded a brace over Rockdale last week.
Prediction: Western Sydney Wanderers 2 def Sydney United 1
Rockdale City Suns vs Wollongong Wolves
Sunday 13th September 4pm @ Ilinden Sports Centre
Rockdale host Wollongong Wolves in the last matchup of Round 7 and all signs point to it being a beauty. Rockdale suffered a shock loss last weekend to WSW whilst Wollongong put the pressure on top of the table Olympic when they defeated Blacktown.
Wollongong will come out with all guns blazing this weekend as they look to steal first place and defend their premiership. They will be boosted greatly by the impact of star forward Thomas James, who made his return with the Wolves in last weekend’s win over Blacktown after a brief stint with Perth Glory in the A-League.
Rockdale won’t be messing about either, who haven’t registered a win since Round 4 and won’t want to slip down the table any further. A big win is needed for the boys in red and black if they want to keep up with the pack and play finals football this year.
Prediction: Wollongong Wolves 3 def Rockdale City Suns 2
Current ladder standings
1. Sydney Olympic – 13 pts
2. Wollongong Wolves – 12 pts
3. Sydney FC – 12 pts
4. Sydney United – 12 pts
5. Rockdale City Suns – 11 pts
6. Marconi Stallions – 10 pts
7. Manly United – 8 pts
8. Mt Druitt Town Rangers – 8 pts
9. Western Sydney Wanderers – 5 pts
10. APIA Leichhardt – 4 pts
11. North Shore Mariners – 3 pts
12. Blacktown City – 2 pts