Tuesday, 1 May 2018

PREVIEW: FFA Cup Round 4

Lambton Jaffas (NPL) v South Cardiff (NL1)
Tuesday 1st May
Arthur Edden Oval @ 7pm

South Cardiff have drawn the NPL Champions but the Jaffas are out of form. A loss to ladder-leaders Charlestown and then draws against struggling sides Adamstown and Valentine. Lambton are coming off the bye so will be fresh but Southy are coming off a fairly relaxed outing for them as they blasted eight past an undermanned Toronto. Still, even with with Southy in form, quality, class and indeed fatigue may all play a part in what should be a Jaffas victory.

A reminder that Southy have made the national stage before as have the Jaffas.

My Tip: Lambton Jaffas 4-1 South Cardiff


Hamilton Azzurri (ZL1) v Charlestown City Blues (NPL)
Wednesday 2nd May
Lisle Carr Oval @ 7pm

The A-League Grand Final will overshadow what is one of the biggest one-off local games in the history of the FFA Cup. Azzurri v Azzurri in a match that is sure to attract Italians from across the region to Lisle Carr Oval. Hamilton Azzurri have been heavily backed in their climb up the Zone League pyramid by loyal sponsors whilst CCB are the biggest spenders in the NPL. What happens on the field is most likely a simple victory for the NPL leaders but it's off the park where the action will be. Expect a huge Hamilton Azzurri following.

My Tip: Hamilton Azzurri 0-8 Charlestown City Blues


Swansea FC (ZPL) v Thornton Redbacks (NL1)
Wednesday 2nd May
Chapman Oval @ 7pm

This is a very intriguing match up as Swansea look to send another higher-division team packing. The Swans in recent years have looked a side that would more than compete in the New-FM competition (at least for 1st Grade and perhaps Reserves) and they'll be keen to prove that again. Thornton 23's have been superb all year and news from the club stats that the reserve side will be playing this fixture as a reward for their efforts. So a very understrength Thornton but still a side that could stir an upset.

My Tip: Swansea FC 3-1 Thornton Redbacks


Edgeworth FC (NPL) v Singleton Strikers (NL1)
Wednesday 2nd May
Jack McLaughlan Oval @ 7pm

The favourite memories of Singo for Newysports was the FFA Cup run in 2016. Their last visit to Jack McLaughlan was the entertaining shootout win over Dudley and that year they were 90 minutes from an appearance on the national stage. It ended in a 7-0 loss to you guessed it, the Eagles. Singo have returned to prominence this season and will be up for the clash but surely it's a routine win for Edgy. This would be one of the great local upsets if Singleton send the back-to-back-to-back Round of 32 qualifiers packing.

The result is surely heading to the NPL premiers but the scoreline depends on who they play and how high their intensity is for this match. At 100% it could get ugly in the 2nd half.

My Tip: Edgeworth FC 8-0 Singleton Strikers


Raymond Terrace (ZL1) v Garden Suburb (ZL1)
Wednesday 2nd May
King Park @ 7pm

It's great to see that at least one Zone League One club is guaranteed to play for a spot in the final eight of the state. Who will it be though? Garden Suburb smashed Wallsend in Round 1 but have since lost three in a row, all by just one goal. The Kingfishers are a solid side but Raymond Terrace are in superb form to start the season and with home advantage should be progressing to the next stage.

My Tip: Raymond Terrace 3-1 Garden Suburb


Toronto-Awaba (NL1) v Adamstown Rosebud (NPL)
Wednesday 2nd May
Lyall Peacock Field @ 7pm

Newysports predicted Adamstown Rosebud to finish last in NPL and their form has at times reflected that prediction. By far the most goals conceded in the NPL and looking like they'll struggle to mount any real form this year. They'd lose to a full-strength Cooks Hill or Thornton but can Toronto send them packing? The Stags are coming off an 8-0 hammering but that was with multiple players out. If any NL1 team is going through over an NPL side, this is the one but have some doubts.

My Tip: Toronto-Awaba 1-3 Adamstown Rosebud


Dudley-Redhead (ZPL) v Valentine FC (NPL)
Wednesday 2nd May
Lydon Oval @ 7pm

Just down the road from Azzurri, Valentine will be in for a physical test and a difficult task against Dudley. The Thistles aren't pretty to watch by any means but possess a real grit that is unmatched at times. Valo cannot underestimate this game or they may very well be given their early marching orders. The Phoenix sit bottom of the NPL competition but did draw with both Maitland and Lambton. They're the favourites but as mentioned, Dudley aren't a side to take lightly.

My Tip: Dudley-Redhead 1-4 Valentine FC


Lake Macquarie City (NPL) v Maitland FC (NPL)
Wednesday 2nd May
Macquarie Field @ 7pm

The all-NPL clash is an interesting one and they meet again at the same venue in a week and a half. Maitland are higher on the table and have a better squad on paper but in cup football anything is truly possible. Lakes know it's a one-off fixture so will likely put a fair bit into winning it but if Maitland play their best lineup then they'll be too good. Can see both sides resting some big names though so who knows.

My Tip: Lake Macquarie City 1-3 Maitland FC


Wallsend FC (NL1) v Broadmeadow Magic (NPL)
Wednesday 2nd May
The Gardens @ 7pm

It was around this time last year that Magic smashed nine goals past Wallsend. The Red Devils are flying high in the league but aren't exactly defending greatly. They seem to fade in the second half at times and thus this game could get ugly. Magic will win no doubt but Wallsend can claim a positive if they keep the scoreline respectable, say under five goals. It'll be a laugh to see one of Newcastle's biggest clubs playing on arguably Newcastle's dodgiest pitch at the moment under lights that aren't the brightest. That may help Wallsend.

My Tip: Wallsend FC 1-6 Broadmeadow Magic


Cardiff City (ZPL) v Cessnock City (NL1)
Thursday 3rd May
Cardiff Oval @ 7pm

It was a bad draw for New-FM sides but Cessnock City will like their chances against a lower opposition. Cardiff City were cup specialists last year but had a shocker at times in the league and they've started the ZPL in similar fashion this time round. They sit dead last in that competition but the FFA Cup is a different ball game. Cessnock should be winning but need to field their best lineup and show Cardiff some respect. Hornets too good though.

My Tip: Cardiff City 1-4 Cessnock City


Kahibah FC (NL1) v Hamilton Olympic (NPL)
Thursday 3rd May
Kahibah Oval @ 7pm

This would have been a terrifying prospect if Olympic still had their squad from previous years. They've changed over a few names and their form has reflected it to start the year. They've struggled in the NPL meaning Kahibah are a chance of an upset but the home side too are struggling, perhaps even worse. Last year's Kahibah side v this year's Olympic would have been interesting but this could get ugly. If Butzmann plays CB, under five goals, if he doesn't then 8+.

My Tip: Kahibah FC 0-4 Hamilton Olympic


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