PS4 NPL Tasmania Round 11 Preview

Northern Rangers welcome the Lions to the NTCA ground as they try to register their first win of the 2016 season.

Northern Rangers v Kingborough Lions, Saturday 4 June, 12:30pm, NTCA 2

They fought valiantly up against South Hobart last week and will be hoping that they can play with a similar fight this week.

The Lions meanwhile will be wondering how they let a 3-0 half time lead slip up against Olympia and how they respond could define the game. If it galvanizes them then they could play with some real fire in their stomachs but it could also have the reverse effect and really rock their confidence.

The last time these two sides met was down at the Den, where they played out a tight 1-1 draw with both side scoring from the penalty spot. Scoring goals from open play has been an area of concern for both sides this season and whilst they have both shown improvements in this area, both have still lacked a cutting edge at times.

Rangers will continue under interim coach Marshall Pooley for now as they seek a replacement for Dane Hudson. He will be looking to his key midfielders to provide a lift as it’s likely to prove pivotal to the contest. 


South Hobart v Launceston City, Saturday 4 June, 2.00pm, Darcy St

South Hobart entertains Launceston City at Darcy St, as they look to make it four wins in a row and keep up the pressure on their title rivals.

They will be happy to have gotten out of the NTCA last week with all three points after going down to ten men so early in the contest. Launceston City by contrast will be keen to forget all about last week after being hammered 5-0 at home by Devonport.

They would also like to forget the last time they met, when it was a whopping 10-0 victory to South Hobart at Mitsubishi Park. They simply had no answers at the back as they were carved apart, but with the likes of Jackson and Schofield now in the side, they should be solid enough to avoid a repeat.

Their defence is still going to have its work cut out trying to slow down a South Hobart side that continues to score with a seeming ease. Alex Leszczynski leads the golden boot race with 13 goals and with Nick Morton and Darcy Hall offering support; they represent a tremendous threat, averaging six goals a game at home at Darcy St.


Hobart JEEP Zebras v Devonport Strikers, Saturday 4 June, 4:00pm, KGV

The game of the round and one of the most anticipated clashes of the season. Any time the top three sides meet this year will be massive in shaping the title race.

The ladder leading Devonport Strikers suffered their only defeat of the season at the hands of Zebras at Valley Road earlier this year and they will be out to avenge that on the road at KGV.

There are fascinating match up’s all over the park but perhaps none more interesting than the Huigsloot v Zupo and Gratton battle. The towering striker will come up against a defensive pair that may have it over him in the air, and he may need to come deep to get the ball and link up with his feet to have his usual influence.


Olympia Warriors v Clarence United, Sunday 5 June, 3.00pm, Warrior Park

An eastern shore derby to conclude round 11 on the Sunday at Warrior Park. There is little love lost between these clubs and these matches are always fiery encounters. 

The first installment of the derby saw a Zachary Drake wonder goal seal the victory for his side as Olympia ran out 2-1 winners.

Clarence sat back deep in that game and absorbed plenty of pressure, frustrating the Warriors and defending resolutely. Perhaps encouragingly for Olympia, this is what Kingborough attempted in the second half last week and it saw a 0-3 deficit turn into a remarkable 4-3 win. Mcneill opted for a move to three at the back and their hyper aggressive approach overwhelmed the Lions.

The likes of Hickey, Mearns and Hoy all reveled in their creative freedom and Clarence will need to be proactive in pressing them slightly higher up the pitch as the Lions did in the first half, to avoid falling into similar pit falls here.


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