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Premier Soccer League Betting Tips

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South African Premier League 2021/22, Tips and Predictions for each upcoming matchday. Full information for your sports bets.

2021/22 PSL Season

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The Premier Soccer League (PSL) is the topmost league in South Africa, also regarded as the DStv Premier League for the last two seasons, but only for sponsorship and marketing purposes. The Premier Soccer League was founded in 1996, two years after the country attained its independence, with Dr. Irvin Khoza, Jomo Sono and Kaizer Motaung the key players in its formation.

In those early years, it started as an 18-team league before a congestion of fixtures saw it reduced to 16 at the close of the 2001/02 season, which resulted in the disbandment of Ria Stars and Free State Stars. Back in 1997, Manning Rangers were crowned the first PSL champions, then coached by the legendary Gordon Igesund, a tactician who would go on to win league titles with three other clubs – Orlando Pirates, Mamelodi Sundowns and Santos. Founding member Dr. Irvin Khoza is still active in the league as he is the current PSL Executive Committee chairman and another long serving member of the game Mr. Kaizer Motaung is a member in the committee.

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PSL Most succesful teams

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Four teams have been able to maintain their PSL status since its formation – SuperSport United, Orlando Pirates, Mamelodi Sundowns and Kaizer Chiefs. These four also rank as the most successful teams in the competition’s history; Sundowns edges them all with 11 league titles while Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates have four each, and SuperSport United have three. Going into the 2021/22 season, Mamelodi Sundowns have bagged the title four straight times and will be eyeing a successful defence in a league they’ve really dominated. Going into the new season, Black Leopards won’t be part after their relegation but Chippa United stays on, after defeating Richards Bay in the relegation playoffs. The new entrant in the league is Sekhukhune United.

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The format of the South African Premier Soccer League

With 16 teams currently taking part in the South African topflight, the league is played on home and away format and at the end of the 30 Match Days, the team on top is declared champion and along with the second placed side they qualify for the CAF Champions League and the third placed finishers head to the CAFC Confederations Cup. The bottom placed finishers are relegated straight to the National First Division (NFD) to be replaced in the PSL by the top finishers in the NFD, and the 15 th  placed team plays the second and third placed teams in the NFD in a promotion/relegation playoff. The winner in the playoffs gets a slot in the PSL for the subsequent season. Teams in the NFD can also buy slots in the PSL, as long as the right procedure is followed.

This has been seen a lot in recent times, as cash strapped clubs have opted to sell their league positions to more ambitious sides in the lower league.

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PSL Sponsorship

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At the moment, the Premier Soccer League stands out as one of the most lucrative and competitive leagues in Africa. All this is thanks to the big sponsorships the league enjoys, as well as incentives for teams to finish as high as possible. The league has had three title sponsors since its inception; Castle Lager were the first, between 1996 and 2007, when ABSA, the bank, came in. ABSA’s dalliance with the top South African league ended in 2020 and DStv stepped in. DStv’s reign was hit by the pandemic and subsequent lockdown, but most notably, teams continued receiving their monthly grants even during lockdown.

The sponsors hand R2.5m (US$ 170,000) per month to the 16 participating teams. For their exploits in the season, Mamelodi Sundowns pocketed a total US$13m, of that amount, US$10.2m was for winning the league title. Over the years, the PSL has churned out big names, including players who have left and signed for in much higher-ranking leagues. The best example of this is the South African international Percy Tau, who signed for Premier League side Brighton from Mamelodi Sundowns. While most of the top players transition through the league to higher and more developed leagues, the PSL has developed the ability to hold on to outstanding players and we have even had cases of players from the Premier League heading to the South African league.

The position of the South African league in world football isn’t in doubt. In 2018 May, La Liga giants Barcelona traveled to Johannesburg to take on Sundowns in a friendly match despite the Spanish side still having not completed their season. The league has easily recognizable stars, including goalkeeper Dennis Onyango, who was in 2016 voted Africa’s best player based in Africa. The Ugandan first played in the PSL for SuperSport United in 2006, going on to win three straight league titles.

In 2011, he moved to Mamelodi Sundowns and has won 10 major titles there, including four league titles, one Champions League and the CAF Super Cup. PSL also attracts top players from outside Africa, the most notable being Serbian Samir Nurkovic, who also ranks as the highest paid player in the league, earning R950,000 (US$646,000) a month. Kaizer Chiefs and Mamelodi Sundowns are currently the best paying clubs in the league.

Key rivalries

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A key aspect that fuels the growth of the South African league and makes it lucrative for sponsors is its acceptability among the fans. The social setup in South Africa makes it easier for fans and the community to associate with regional teams. Some regions have more than one team in the league and with this, the rivalry grows as these teams seek a claim for the bragging rights.The Soweto Derby comes up as one of the biggest rivalries in the league; it features Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates. This rivalry also ranks among the biggest in Africa.

The Durban Derby also sits high among fans; it involves the two Durban sides – AmaZulu and Golden Arrows. The other rivalry comes in the shape of the Tshwane Derby, which features Mamelodi Sundowns and SuperSport United.

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PSL Stats

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When choosing a team to back, stats are crucial, even though they don’t always stick out to a given formula, in most cases the variation is really minimal. Our betting experts delve into the finer details regarding the matches, and teams’ stats to inform a good choice to help you make a decision.For example, when betting on goals, it will be key to note that in the Premier Soccer League, teams defend more than they attack, and as a result, not so many goals are scored in this league. Last season, the average goals return was 2.11 per game, going down by 0.01from the previous season. A total of 507 goals were scored, one fewer than in the previous season, and champions Mamelodi Sundowns scored the most, at 49. Cape Town City were the best scorers at home, with 27 goals while Sundowns scored the most away from home – 24.

Marumo Gallants were the poorest scorers in the season, managing just 19 goals all season. A total of 539 players were used by the teams taking part in the league, and 34.2% of the matches last season ended with a total two goals, which was the highest number and it means most of the bets that won had a prediction of under 2.5 goals. 20% of the games had a total of three goals scored while five goals were scored only 2.1% times and 12.1% of the matches had no goals. 1-1 was the most common score line; a total of 55 matches, translating to 22.9% ended that way.

An emphasis on the low scoring nature of this league is that last season the most common score line at half time was 0-0, which was registered 90 times (37.5%) while 2-0 or 0-2 at half time was only witnessed nine times (3.8%). The margins for home and away weren’t also very big, for example if you chose to go with the total shots per game. The average shots per game last season was 16.34, with the home team having an average 8.46 shots and 7.88 for the away side. The same applied to the ball possession numbers; the home team usually had slightly higher, at 51%, while the away team average was 49%.

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2021/22 PSL - Our Free Betting Tips 

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As it has been in the past seasons, there are plenty of options when it comes to betting on the PSL. The matches provide the most available and frequent option to place bets on, but there will also be options on the final standings, and who wins the title in the end, what the top four will look like, which team joins the champions in the continental competitions and so on. Apart from just the three traditional markets – win, draw, lose – our betting experts will carefully analyse and try to give options on the best bets with the highest odds and least risk.

So, who are the favorites for the PSL title this season? Going by the recent seasons and the way teams have beefed up, Mamelodi Sundowns can be a very easy pick. They have maintained the core of their team and being the biggest winners (financially), means they still have the muscle to keep motivating their players. However, we can’t rule out the challenge posed by SuperSport United, who finished fifth last season and had the best joint home form alongside Sundowns and Orlando Pirates. AmaZulu had an explosive run last season after the appointment of South Africa legend Benni McCarthy.

They finished second in the league but with additional Champions League assignments, they may struggle to cope especially given they don’t have a financial muscle as big as Mamelodi Sundowns, Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates. Kaizer Chiefs have a point to prove this season. Despite their challengers last season, they went all the way to the CAF Champions League final where they fell to Pitso Mosimane- coached Al Ahly. They had a transfer ban and you can bet things will be better for them this season, with good planning. Our team of betting experts will be covering the PSL games throughout the season; follow their advice and make the 2020/21 PSL season a winning one for you.

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Our South African Premier Soccer League Predictions of the moment

Best odds to bet on PSL