Round 16 Preview – League One Men’s

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We go again as all eight round 16 games in the FNSW League One Men’s competition take place this Saturday evening.

Plenty to look ahead too, our match of the round takes us to Majors Bay Reserve, while Bonnyrigg host the league leaders elsewhere. That and more in our round 16 preview.

Match of the Round: Inter Lions v Bankstown City; Saturday 25th May, 7pm, Majors Bay Reserve

Our match of the round sees Inter Lions host Bankstown City in a contest between two sides in relatively good form.

A repeat of our season opener, that night Inter Lions prevailed over Bankstown City by a 3-1 margin but a lot of things can and have changed in half a season.

We’ll start with the victors on that occasion in Inter Lions who tasted defeat for the first time in a month last weekend. Backing up from a cup victory midweek, they went down narrowly to Blacktown Spartans in an upper mid-table showdown.

It has arguably been their cup form which has turned their season around as they progressed to the seventh round. Their danger men are Ahmad Taleb who has scored nine goals this season while FIkret Berisha has also been in good form so far. Expect to see a response to last weeks defeat here.

They face a Bankstown City side who are in good form themselves. Losing just one game in their last twelve, they find themselves in fourth position. They’ve conceded just once in their last four games and sit five points outside the all important top two.

Last weekend, they had to be patient against Macarthur Rams. Some half time changes paying off away from home with Mabior Garang scoring twice in the final twenty minutes. Garang taking his tally to ten goals this season while Chris Payne has added a new dimension to Sasha Tirovski’s side.

Probably the pick of the games this weekend, you can catch the action on the Football NSW youtube page under the live tab.

Other Features

Bonnyrigg White Eagles v Mt Druitt Town Rangers; Saturday 25th May, 7pm, Bonnyrigg Sports Club

Our second match were focusing on is a repeat of our round one match of the round as Bonnyrigg White Eagles host Mt Druitt Town Rangers.

In that match up Mt Druitt Town Rangers prevailed by a single goal margin in a close match, so can we expect something similar here?

We’ll start with Bonnyrigg White Eagles who will host their first of eight straight games at home this weekend. Four points from their last two games, they drew with Canterbury Bankstown last weekend following on from a victory against UNSW in round 14 action.

Mason Versi gave them the lead in the game against the Berries but he will be missing this one after receiving a red card. With a close goal difference and twelve of their fifteen remaining fixture at home in the second half of the season, they could well climb up the table in forthcoming weeks.

They face a Mt Druitt Town Rangers side who bounced back last weekend. There are few better feelings in football than a late winner and they will be hoping to use that to build some momentum going into the second half of the season.

Daniel Wong was the goalscorer in that one scoring his fourth goal of the season. Wong starting games regularly since the start of April. While Malcom Ward could be back from suspension in this one. It’s been an impressive first half of the season for  Andy Montgomery’s side, can they keep it up from here on out?

Canterbury Bankstown v SD Raiders; Saturday 25th May, 7pm, Jensen Park

Finally to conclude our feature match section. In form side Canterbury Bankstown host SD Raiders looking to continue their charge up the table.

The first meeting between these two saw SD Raiders secure a 2-0 victory over Canterbury Bankstown at Ernie Smith Reserve.

Canterbury Bankstown’s winning run became an unbeaten run last weekend when they shared the points with Bonnyrigg White Eagles at the same venue. Still, 14 points in their last six games is a great return as they sit level on 24 points with Inter Lions and Blacktown Spartans.

And you guessed it, Taiga Kawano found the back of the net once again, Kawano scoring eight of his sides 22 goals so far this season. They haven’t conceded from open play in their past three fixtures so that sets them up as a hard time to beat in this one.

Much to their relief, SD Raiders threw the shackles off in round 15 action with a convincing win over Northern Tigers. In 10th position, it’s been a tricky opening half of the season for Goran Ljuboja’s side who have struggled to replicate last seasons exploits.

Even more of a relief was the fact it was Mihael Marcic who scored a brace in the first half. Remarkably his first two goals of the campaign so far in the league. Confidence restored, they will look to grab some momentum heading into the second half of the season here.

Quickfire Previews

Hakoah FC v Dunbar Rovers; Saturday 25th May, 4:30pm, Hensley Athletic Field

A third straight home game awaits Hakoah FC who will be looking to bounce back from a 4-0 defeat to Bulls FC Academy last weekend. The last five results have been inconsistent with two wins and many defeats. However with some winnable matches in the next month or so, they could return to the top two race here.

We learnt last weekend that Dunbar Rovers won’t be easy to beat though. Pushing Mt Druitt Town Rangers to their limit, a couple of mistakes last weekend cost them. Despite four games without scoring a goal, they have reason to be encouraged going forward.

Previous Meeting: Dunbar Rovers 1-1 Hakoah FC

Dulwich Hill v Blacktown Spartans; Saturday 25th May, 5pm, Arlington Oval

There’s no doubt that the past month or so has been particularly tough on Dulwich Hill. Five straight defeats has them firmly planted in 14th position in need of a result. As such, they will look to Steve Kuzmanovski and Emmanuel Zervas to lead from the front here. While a clean sheet could be as valuable as gold.

They face Blacktown Spartans who are well placed on the competition ladder in fifth pace. They bounced back from a disappointing round 14 defeat with a win over Inter Lions last weekend. Peter Pelekanos, William Di Martino and Josh Bartolotto found the back of the net. Exactly the response Ben Rollison asked for.

Previous Meeting: Blacktown Spartans 2-3 Dulwich Hill

UNSW FC v Nepean FC; Saturday 25th May, 5pm, The Village Green

Revenge will be on the mind of UNSW FC who will be looking to turnaround their round one defeat to Nepean FC. A result which saw a lot of soul searching, they come into this week in high spirits after a victory over Dulwich Hill. Matias Da Silva Santos starred with two goals on the night, one of a few players who have returned from injury in recent weeks.

Nepean FC for their part have had their own battles with a depleted squad. Last week they controlled their game with Rydalmere Lions for over an hour before a couple of poor moments denied them a result. Eight straight defeats, they will take confidence from their first game with UNSW into this one.

Previous Meeting: Nepean FC 4-0 UNSW FC

Rydalmere Lions v Northern Tigers; Saturday 25th May, 7pm, Rydalmere Park

Back-to-back victories has seen Rydalmere Lions rise up the table in recent weeks. Last weekend, they prevailed over Nepean FC on the road courtesy of a second half comeback. A key feature being the way they spread the ball around the pitch in the final 25 minutes with Marcus Lal, Isaac Cunningham and Luca Kmet scoring.

They come against the Northern Tigers at perhaps the right time. Struggling for consistency, they have won just two games in their last five. Last weekend, they went down heavily to SD Raiders with their best period of the game coming late in the first half. Will we see a response here?

Previous Meeting: Northern Tigers 2-2 Rydalmere Lions

Macarthur Rams v Bulls FC Academy; Saturday 25th May, 7pm, Lynwood Park

The old cliche goes “Form goes out the window in a derby” and Macarthur Rams will be hoping that’s the case in this one. Three straight defeats has seen their climb up the table stagnate. Not quite in a relegation fight, a win here could be the highlight of their season so far.

It would be some victory though as Bulls FC Academy are flying after two victories over fellow top three opposition. Last weekend overcoming their toughest test of the season yet against Hakoah FC with Mason Wells, Joel Bertolissio and Flynn Madden all finding the back of the net in the victory. Hard to see them getting beaten here.

Previous Meeting:Bulls FC Academy 1-0 Macarthur Rams

By Justin Smith