MATCHES on Thursday, Saturday and Sunday make up round seven of the PS4 National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s 1.
The Match of the Round is at Lilys Football Centre, while another big games sees Sydney United 58 FC host APIA Leichhardt Tigers.
MATCH OF THE ROUND
Blacktown City FC v Manly United, 3pm Sunday at Lilys Football Centre
Blacktown City are second, unbeaten and only two points behind Sydney United 58 FC, with a game in hand.
Mark Crittenden’s side are looking in ominously good form, even if they did need a late Joe Gibbs equaliser to level the score against Rockdale City Suns last weekend. It was back-to-back goals for Gibbs though, and it could well kick start his season.
Manly meanwhile were buzzing after two wins in a row, but they were brought back to earth with a thud against Sydney Olympic as they went down 2-0 at Cromer Park.
Paul Dee’s side are nestled in mid table and they possess big threats in Chris Payne and Brendan Cholakian.
They will back themselves to cause an upset, and Blacktown City will have to be wary of the beaches side.
South Coast Wolves v Bonnyrigg White Eagles, 8pm Thursday at WIN Stadium
Winless Wolves’ task gets no easier in this Thursday night fixture as they host Bonnyrigg White Eagles in Wollongong.
Wolves drew 0-0 in a drab encounter with Parramatta FC at Melita Stadium last week, and coach Nahuel Arrarte will be looking for significant improvement at home this weekend.
The White Eagles will be smarting from their 3-1 loss at home to Sydney United 58 last weekend, when they took the lead through Chris Tadrosse but then conceded two soft goals immediately after. They will back themselves to get back on a winning track, but Wollongong is one of the toughest places to go.
Sutherland Sharks v Rockdale City Suns, 7.30pm Saturday at Seymour Shaw Park
There is a local derby feel to Saturday night’s clash at Seymour Shaw Park between Sutherland Sharks and Rockdale City Suns.
Neither side managed a win last week, as Sutherland went down to APIA Leichhardt and Rockdale City drew with Blacktown City.
Sutherland played the whole second half with ten men last weekend and they will fancy their chances if they can keep 11 on the park.
Rockdale City came within six minutes of their first win of the season, only to succumb to Joe Gibbs’ late equaliser. They will not want their winless run to stretch to seven weeks if they still have ambitions to make an impact in the top half of the table.
Sydney Olympic v Marconi Stallions, 7pm Sunday at Valentine Sports Park No 2
Sydney Olympic made easy work of Manly United last weekend, winning 2-0 to cement fourth place on the ladder for now.
Harris Gaitatzis and Taiga Soeda scored, as they often do, as Grant Lee’s side remained undefeated with three wins and two draws from five matches.
They will not want to slip up against a Marconi side who have recorded one win and five losses so far this season.
Paul Carter’s side simply didn’t show up as they went down 3-0 to Spartans last weekend and were it not for goalkeeper Sam Nastic, it would have been far uglier. They need to start improving or they will be in serious trouble.
Blacktown Spartans v Parramatta FC, 3pm Sunday at Blacktown Football Park
Sixth plays ninth at Blacktown Football Park on Sunday afternoon, as Blacktown Spartans host Parramatta FC.
Spartans will be riding high after a 3-0 win against Marconi Stallions last weekend, their second win of the season.
This fixture gives Ben De Haan’s side a valuable opportunity to string together back-to-back wins and really get their season rolling.
Parramatta FC are winless since their round one win against Marconi Stallions, and after their nil-all draw with South Coast, they will be aware of their need to improve to take a point or three here.
Sydney United 58 FC v APIA Leichhardt Tigers, 3pm Sunday at Sydney United Sports Centre
Sydney United 58 are on top of the table after their win against Bonnyrigg White Eagles last weekend.
Chris Triantis, Panni Nikas, and new signing Richard Cardozo all scored, and their side has a sharp looking edge to it with the return to fitness and form of Triantis and Nikas and the addition of Cardozo.
The form of Matthew Bilic has been a big fillip for the side too, as his sweet left foot and ability to beat players on either the left or right gives Mark Rudan’s side further options.
APIA-Leichhardt bounced back from their loss to Blacktown City by beating Sutherland Sharks thanks to goals from Corey Biczo and Blake Powell.
Powell is in unstoppable form and he will be United’s main worry. The Reds beat APIA on penalties in the FFA Cup a few weeks ago, too.
– By Matthew Lopez, PS4 National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s 1 Editor