PS4 NPL NSW Men's Preview

After further Westfield FFA Cup preliminary matches midweek, we look again to the PS4 NPL NSW Men’s 2 action where the classic Bankstown derby catches the eye.

Bankstown Berries v Bankstown City, Saturday 7:30pm, The Crest, Bass Hill

This match has the potential to be a cracker.

The undefeated Berries meet their near neighbours Bankstown City for what will be their first match at The Crest this season, so it will just be a short drive down Hector Street for the Lions, for this relatively new local derby. The Berries are coming off a good win at Mounties last weekend, but had a tough Cup game against Northern Tigers at Mills Park on Wednesday, going down 3-1.The home side have high hopes for this season and what better way to show what they are made off, with a win here.

The visitors have come through with some excellent results of their own over the past couple of weeks. They have scored sixteen goals in their past four games including the Cup and fear no one. They had an easier Cup tie than the Berries, but still had to overcome a decent Coogee United, who took them to extra time. With fourteen league goals between them, there should be a lot to enjoy for the spectators who venture to Bass Hill.

St George FC v Mounties Wanderers Saturday 7:30pm, St George Stadium, Kyeemagh

It is difficult to believe that these two teams, who surely expected better starts to the season, would both be sitting on zero points after three games each. They are usually seen fighting for positions at the other end of the table, but it has been a less than satisfactory start, as the Saints and Mounties would no doubt attest. It was not that long ago that they were meeting in a Grand Final.

They will both need to start earning some points very soon, as even now, so early in the season, they may find a large gap starting to emerge. At least one club should be happier come 9:20pm Saturday night, though who that may be remains uncertain. St George had the luxury, if one could call it that, of having no Cup commitments midweek while Mounties traveled to Belmore to meet Sydney Olympic before losing 3-0.  Mounties have a good strike rate at St George Stadium though, recording some hefty wins in recent years.

Macarthur Rams v Fraser Park, Saturday 7:30pm, Lynwood Park, St Helens Park

Macarthur Rams kit up for their fourth scheduled home game out of five as they meet Fraser Park on Saturday night. They won’t have been too pleased succumbing to the Lions last weekend, especially after taking the lead, so they will be looking to make amends this week. The Rams slumped four spots to eighth with that loss, but had an early opportunity to quickly gather another win, when defeating Gosford City in the Cup on Wednesday. Like St George, Fraser Park were without Cup action which may prove to be of some benefit heading into Saturday.

Mount Druitt Town Rangers v Central Coast, Saturday 7:30pm, Popondetta Park, Emerton

It has been a good week for Mount Druitt Town Rangers but not so for Central Coast.

The Rangers picked up their second win last weekend to regather some composure after their previous loss and will be looking to gain some momentum when the Coast come calling on Saturday. They may be meeting them at just the right time too, the Coast having lost twice during the past seven days. They went down surprisingly in the Cup last week and then suffered that heavy defeat at home to Spirit. Rest assured though that Peter Preston will be working overtime to ensure that the Coast get back on track.

Spirit FC v Hakoah Sydney City East, Sunday 3:00pm, Christie Park, Marsfield

Both clubs racked up some mileage midweek in their Cup journeys. Spirit had the lesser of the two evils, travelling down to Wollongong to meet the Wolves while Hakoah Sydney City East had the unenviable midweek task of travelling over the mountains to Bathurst. Spirit deserved better from their Cup outing, looking a very good chance for an upset when leading at half time before a couple of second half penalties turned the tables, while Hakoah were also eliminated, returning to Sydney after having been knocked out on penalties.

It has been a great week for Spirit nonetheless, coming away from Gosford with a very creditable win last Sunday. They kept the Coast scoreless for the first time this season, while doubling their goals against tally. Defence is normally Spirit’s strong point, and the single goal conceded is proof of that. Hakoah lead the table, as they do the Club Championship, so they will be nothing but delighted with their start. They are unlikely to get too far ahead of themselves though, the experienced Mark Robertson will make sure of that.

Northern Tigers v Sydney University, Sunday 3:00pm, Mills Park, Asquith

Northern Tigers welcome a Sydney University who are sitting rock bottom on the ladder and unfortunately for Uni, it just doesn’t get any easier.

The Tigers, after having disposed of Bankstown Berries from the Cup on Wednesday, make the quick turnaround back to Mills Park for this encounter. They are likely to be confident of success, with Uni having made a terrible start to the season. Just one goal scored and nine against shows that there is plenty of work to be done. They would have gained a lot of satisfaction though from their decisive 4-1 win over Bulli in the Cup and Raul Blanco, who has coached at the highest level, and is without question the most experienced coach in the league, knows what is required to turn around the poor start, so Northern Tigers will do well to take nothing for granted.

Source FNSW website - by Peter Rowney, PS4 National Premier Leagues NSW Men's 2 Reporter