Super League Round 5 Preview


The pre-season favourites and early competition leaders should produce a real arm wrestle of an affair, but fans may be forced to wait for a goal as the previous two meetings between the combatants has produced a grand total of one successful strike. The Eagles beat the Rams 1-0 at Lynwood in July 2007, following a 0-0 draw in April, before Macarthur?s one-year promotion to Premier League.
Central Coast Lightning hosts Bossy Liverpool at Pluim Park on Saturday night (7.30pm) in an important match for both sides. The Lightning?s breakthrough win in round four has breathed new life into their 2009 campaign, but Bossy are yet to savour victory this season and another loss could consign the defending champions to the bottom of the table. It should be a tight tussle if history is anything to go by, with Liverpool winning three and Central Coast two of the five encounters between them. Bossy have won their last two games at Pluim Park.
Fraser Park face a David-versus-Goliath task when they welcome Rockdale City Suns to Fraser Park on Saturday night (7.30pm). While giants Rockdale are slowly awaking from their early season slumber, Fraser Park still have three losses to start the year; but history has the margin a lot closer. The teams have two wins and two draws each from their six league meetings; they traded 5-1 wins in 2006, a 1-0 Suns win and 2-2 draw in 2007, and a 1-0 Fraser Park win and 1-1 draw last year. Overall, Fraser Park is yet to beat Rockdale at Fraser Park.
St George Saints will be fired up when they travel to Christie Park to take on Super League newcomers Spirit FC on Saturday night (7.30pm). Both teams remain undefeated after three games this season (a win and two draws each) and a win this weekend will keep the top of the table within reach. Saints forward Juan Carlos Chavez will also be looking to extend his frenetic goalscoring run having netted in each match so far, including four in the first round.
The Northern Tigers tackle Granville Rage at Mills Park on Sunday afternoon (3pm kick-off). Granville, in particular, need to produce up front having gone three and a half games without scoring, while the Tigers are still searching for their first win. After a 0-0 draw in their first Super League game, in 2004, the two teams have produced some outstanding encounters, scoring 35 goals in eight matches since. The Tigers have won five of nine games, despite six of them being played at Garside Park, while the Rage won the only fixture at Mills Park, 1-0 last year.
Sydney University visit Popondetta Park on Sunday afternoon (3pm) to take on Mount Druitt Town Rangers in exceptional circumstances. Both teams sit inside the top five and can consolidate their top of the table position with a good result this weekend. The Rangers and Uni have scored eight goals in three games this season and also share a close history. In four league meetings, Uni have won twice (3-1 and 1-0 in 2007), followed by a 0-0 draw and 0-3 win to Mount Druitt last year.
-By Daniel De Nardi