Teams face relegation

2017-05-10 06:00

It is make or break for Free State Stars and Bloemfontein Celtic in their fight to retain Premier Soccer League status.

The two Free State clubs are facing relegation from South Africa’s elite football league. They are desperate for every point to avoid the dreaded relegation. Every point they collect in their remaining three league fixtures is important to ensure they stay in the top-flight league.

The irony is that each have to face off in one of the three must-win games.

Their derby will be on 17 May at the Dr R.P. Molemela Stadium in Bloemfontein.

With both Phunya Sele Sele and Ea Lla Koto in a predicament, one cannot expect any favour to survive. It is do or die for both. Their tough battle to avoid relegation continues tonight (10/05), with Phunya Sele Sele hosting Orlando Pirates, while Ea Lla Koto play host to the 2016-’17 Premiership-elect champion Bidvest Wits at Goble Park Stadium in Bethlehem.

Stars are bound to survive the big chop to the National First Division. Wits need every point to tighten their grip on the Premiership trophy, thus compelling both to unleash their very best in today’s crunch fixture. Stars’ last fixture of the 2016-’17 season is on 27 May against an equally troubled Chippa United in Bethlehem.

Phunya Sele Sele will wrap up the season with a tough away encounter against Maritzburg United.

Although Celtic are somewhat better off compared to their provincial rival Stars, they too desperately need maximum points to ensure their safety.

Currently Celtic are in position 12 with 26 points, needing four points to reach a safe threshold of 30 points. In contrast, Ea Lla Koto, in 14th position with 23 points, need nine points in the remaining matches. The survival of both Celtic and Stars will largely depend on the outcomes of clubs that are also fighting relegation. These include Baroka FC, Highlands Park and Chippa.

Today’s fixtures, between Phunya Sele Sele versus Pirates, and Free State Stars versus Wits, kick off at 19:30.

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