The 2018-2019 ABSA Premiership season starts this weekend with a full round of matches, with six of them on Saturday.
And the soccer fanatics can’t wait to see what teams and players will stand out this season.
Following an unpredictable 2017/18 season, it’s certainly difficult to make early predictions.
However there will be teams that will get more attention as a result of their performances during previous campaigns.
Amongst them will be teams that performed below the expected standard.
These teams with great pedigree, will be under immense pressure to step up.
Kaizer Chiefs player, Ramahlwe Mphahlele, “Past three seasons haven’t been the way we want them to be but it’s football: every club goes through a transition whereby they were doing well and then they just go through a slump. We have suffered enough, it’s about time that we show as players as a club that we want to bounce back.”
Supersport United captain, Dean Furman,”We know the challenge that is ahead of us, we know that we have to be better than last season especially our league campaign. But for us it’s a great opportunity to get our season to a perfect start we have shown that we can do it before, hopefully we will be able to do it again.”
Maritzburg United and Free State Stars are two teams that have performed better than expected last season.
Their focus should be about maintaining consistency in the league while challenging for silverware.
Maritzburg United captain, Siyanda Xulu, “We know what happened with Wits: they won the championship the next they didn’t get it their own way so its going to be important for us to keep grounded and challenge for the new season. Whatever happened last season is in the past, it’s not going to be easy now because all the teams are going to come prepared. Whenever they play us they are going to know that they are up for a game so it’s up to us to take it to the next level.”
Defending Champions Mamelodi Sundowns and runners-up Orlando Pirates are the only two South African clubs to have won the CAF Champions League.
Both teams will return to the prestigious continental tournament while they will also battle for top honours in the domestic league.
Orlando Pirates chairman, Irvin Khoza,”As Pirates we are expected to do well in all the competitions we participating because the pedigree, the history of the club challenges us that second best is not good enough for Orlando Pirates football club because the history suggests that we must always be competing.”
The opening match of the season will be the highly anticipated clash between hosts Sundowns and Kaizer Chiefs at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday afternoon.