PS4 NPL NNSW Round 18 Preview

PS4 NPL NNSW Round 18 Preview
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For the third time this season Hamilton takes on Edgeworth and over the last three seasons, fixtures between these two sides have been the most eagerly anticipated.

Match of the Round
Hamilton Olympic v Edgeworth Eagles
2.30pm Sunday 16th July at Darling Street Oval

Last Meeting: Round 7, 2017: Edgeworth 1 Hamilton 1 at Darling Street Oval.
Ladder: Hamilton 4th (28pts), Edgeworth 1st (33)

Last 3 Starts (most recent first):
Edgeworth – Won Jets 4-1 (h), Won Magpies 2-1 (a), Won Rosebud 3-0 (a)
Hamilton – Won Blues 2-1 (a), Won Jets 2-1 (a), Drew Magpies 2-2 (h)

Bottom Line

While Hamilton don’t seem as close to the premiership race as they were over the past two seasons, a win over the Eagles this weekend will incredibly put them within two points of top spot.

Olympic come into the match on the back of two straight victories, and two last-gasp victories, instilling themselves as the competitions comeback kings. Last weekend, two goals in the final 17 minutes ensured three points against Charlestown.

It was the third match in a row Olympic have scored in the final 15 minutes to get a result.

It is fascinating that while Olympic are the league’s most potent side in the final 15 minutes of matches – scoring 10 and conceding just two – their opponents Edgeworth are the PlayStation ® National Premier Leagues (NPL) NNSW’s best defensive side in the final 15 minutes.

They haven’t conceded once in the PS4 NPL this season and have scored four of their own.

Key: Can Edgeworth win their first PS4 NPL match at Darling Street since 2011?

 

Valentine Phoenix v Maitland Magpies
2.30pm Saturday 15th July at Cahill Oval

Last Meeting: Round 6, 2017: Maitland 0 Valentine 4 at Cooks Square Park.
Ladder: Valentine 3rd (31), Maitland 6th (24)

Past 3 Starts (most recent first):
Valentine – Won Jets 3-2 (h), Lost Rosebud 2-4 (a), Won Jaffas 2-1 (h)
Maitland –  Won Bears 3-2 (a), Lost Eagles 1-2 (h), Drew Olympic 2-2 (a)

Bottom Line

Neither Valentine nor Maitland can afford to drop points this weekend as the race for the top four intensifies.

Maitland sit four points adrift of fourth-placed Hamilton and while defeat won’t end their finals hopes, it will make the task very difficult

The Magpies scraped past Weston last weekend in the ‘El Classicoal’ and while coach Phil Dando though his side were lucky to claim three points, he will be pleased they could still claim victory without playing at their full potential.

Valentine had last weekend off with the bye but met the Newcastle Jets Youth on Wednesday last week.

A 3-2 victory against the Jets kept them entrenched in the top four and provided a significant boost to their confidence after it received a battering in the second half of round 16 against Adamstown.

The Phoenix led 2-0 inside half-an-hour against the Rosebuds. Captain, Scott McGinley put a penalty over the bar before half-time and from there it all went downhill for Valentine. Four goals later and the Rosebuds had pulled off a remarkable 4-2 win.

Key: Consistency. Both sides haven’t been that of late. Who can step up in a match that means plenty for both clubs?

 

Lambton Jaffas v Charlestown City Blues
2.30pm Saturday 15th July at Arthur Edden Oval

Last Meeting: Round 7, 2017: Charlestown 1 Lambton 2 at Lisle Carr Oval.
Ladder: Lambton 2nd (32), Charlestown 8th (15)

Past 3 Starts (most recent first):
Lambton – Lost Magic 1-3 (a), Won Roosters 3-1 (h), Lost Phoenix 1-2 (a)
Charlestown – Lost Olympic 1-2 (h), Lost Roosters 0-2 (a), Lost Magic 0-2 (a)

Bottom Line

Lambton will aim to respond from a defeat with a victory for the fifth time in all competitions in 2017 when they host a Charlestown side who have lost three on the spin but have given a good account of themselves in each defeat.

The Blues come into the fixture on the back of a defeat to Hamilton Olympic on Sunday afternoon, where like most sides recently against Hamilton, they had the lead going into the final 20 minutes before a late Olympic surge was enough to get them over the line.

Injuries to key players including skipper Matt Tull have cruelled the Blues over the back-half of the campaign, but to look on the bright side their young talent has stood tall over the last few weeks.

Meanwhile, Lambton have struggled over the last few weeks, winning just one of their last three matches to fall from the top spot on the ladder.

Last weekend they were outgunned by a dominant Broadmeadow Magic side 3-1 away from home, where they struggled to create chances against a strong Magic backline.

The loss of Jobe Wheelhouse seems to have been keenly felt by Lambton who have won two and lost two in the PS4 NPL NNSW since he was injured a month ago in the Westfield FFA Cup clash with Edgeworth.

Key: Can Lambton respond from defeat with a win for the fifth time this year?

 

Newcastle Jets Youth v Weston Bears
2.30pm Saturday 15th July at Rockwell Automation Park

Last Meeting: Round 7, 2017: Weston 2 Jets Youth 2 at Rockwell Automation Park.
Ladder: Jets Youth 10th (9), Weston 11th (7)

Past 3 Starts (most recent first):
Jets – Lost Eagles 1-4 (a), Lost Phoenix 2-3 (a), Lost Olympic 1-2 (h)
Weston – Lost Magpies 2-3 (h), Lost Rosebud 0-2 (h), Lost Jaffas 0-5 (a)

Bottom Line

Both Weston and the Jets Youth will be in need of some confidence in the PS4 NPL NNSW with both sides winless run in their last 11 matches combined.

The Bears have lost their last six straight, while the Jets Youth have lost their last five matches.

Weston were unlucky on Saturday in the Coalfields Derby, going down 3-2 in a tight encounter where they deserved at least a point.

Midweek, they took on the Newcastle Jets Hyundai A-League side and went down 2-0 in a match where the Bears gave a great account of themselves, scrambling in defence to deny the Jets on numerous occasions, while also creating a couple of chances for themselves.

The Jets Youth play their third match of a four in a frantic two-week period when they clash with the Bears on Saturday. They will play Lake Macquarie on Tuesday before flying out to China where they will participate in the prestigious Weifang Cup.

Key: With two young sides on show, can a player on either side step up and take the game by the scruff of the neck?

 

Broadmeadow Magic v Adamstown Rosebud
2.30pm Sunday 16th July at Magic Park

Last Meeting: Round 7, 2017: Adamstown 0 Broadmeadow 0 at Adamstown Oval.
Ladder: Broadmeadow 5th (27), Adamstown 9th (13)

Last 3 Starts (most recent first):
Broadmeadow – Won Jaffas 3-1 (h), Won Blues 2-0 (h), Won Phoenix 3-1 (a)
Adamstown – Lost Roosters 1-3 (a), Won Phoenix 4-2 (h), Won Bears 3-0 (a)

Bottom Line

Adamstown faces one of the most daunting prospects in the PS4 NPL NNSW at the moment – a dual with a Magic side who have won seven straight and only seem to be getting better.

Last weekend Broadmeadow knocked over the league-leading Lambton Jaffas 3-1, in one of their most impressive performances of the season and coach Ruben Zadkovich spoke after the match about how keen his men are to right the wrongs of the first 11 rounds.

One of their most disappointing performances of the first round of matches was the clash at Adamstown Oval on ANZAC Day against the Rosebud’s where Magic simply couldn’t break down a stout Adamstown defence.

Zadkovich and his men will be keen to erase that result from their memories with a quality showing in front of their home fans against the Rosebuds.

Adamstown coach Nick Webb returns to Magic where he started the season as Assistant Coach before taking a break and then moving to Adamstown last month.

Key: Can Adamstown solve their first half woes, without comprising their second half performances?

 

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