South Africa is one of the powerhouse countries when it comes to African football, with the PSL named as the biggest league on the continent when it comes to factors such as revenue, success on the field, supporters and competitive league and cup action throughout.
Two of the country’s most well-known and supported teams are Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates, who have for long periods over the past 50 years dominated the local scene, and they frequently battle in what is known as the Soweto Derby.
So who should you bet on to win the Soweto Derby 2020? Well, betting on 1X2 markets is always difficult as the likelihood of winning is diminished and the odds are not always in your favour. However, what you can do, is to bet on a variety of markets, to improve the chances of you winning and to try and get better odds.
For example, we might be predicting a draw of 1-1, but instead of betting on the X market, rather bet on Under 2.5 goals, or on Both teams to score etc.
They have not quite reached the heights of previous eras of late with the likes of Bidvest Wits and Mamelodi Sundowns being the most successful team in the Premier Soccer League of late.
Kaizer Chiefs have not won the league title in five years, while Pirates have not been as consistent as they have been over the decades.
Despite poor recent form over the past few years the two clubs are still the most well-supported in the country, with each sets of fans rivaling in the millions.
Chiefs and Pirates have the unique privilege of being well supported throughout the country and each of their league and cup matches against local opposition still sees the Soweto giants dominate gate attendance.
The Soweto derby is one of the largest in the world, and rivals Al Ahly and Zamalek of Egypt for passion, filled stadiums, reams of media coverage and millions of words on social media exchanged every day.
The match brings the football loving country to a halt, and while they generally play against each other a handful of times a year there is always a sell-out crowd, an intense build-up weeks before the contest and headlines aplenty (both before and after the game).
Kaizer Chiefs are currently enjoying one of their best league campaigns in many years and lead the PSL standings by 10 points heading into Christmas and the league title is all but sown up.
This adds spice to already fiery derby encounters against the old foes and the next few clashes will be keenly anticipated.
Pirates are going through a lean patch, and this season they lie in sixth position and have just installed a new coach, after the last was dumped after a poor string of results.
But regardless of form, or log standings the Soweto derby is the premier game in SA football, and even if both sides are not in league contention, as has been the case over the recent past, these games are the most anticipated on the calendar.
There are also three major cup competitions a season and meetings between these rivals in the various stages of the competitions on hand are fiercely contested, attract millions of viewers across the country and the continent.
Chiefs and Pirates have historically been among the most successful clubs in the country, and while the emergence of Sundowns as consistent tile contenders and cup winners has seen the Soweto clubs batting for ultimate superiority.
Chiefs boast a total of 12 domestic league titles, lifting their first league triumph in 1974 and since the establishment of the Premier Soccer League in 1996 have picked up four local league wins. Orlando Pirates have also picked up for league titles in the same time period.
Sundowns have emerged as the league kings in the last 23 years picking up nine titles and are five ahead of second placed Chiefs and Pirates on the all-time PSL log.
Chiefs are the “winningest” cup team in the country and hold the record for the most trophies in the Nedbank Cup (same format as FA Cup in England), the Telkom (League) Cup and the MTN 8 competition,
They have won the prestigious Nedbank Cup 13 times, the MTN Super 8 an incredible 15 times and the Telkom (League) Cup a record 13 times.
AmaKhosi boast more than 50 trophies and are the most successful team in the history of football in South Africa.
Orlando Pirates boast a massive trophy cabinet themselves with nine league titles over the past 50 years, four of them coming in the premiership era. They have won the Nedbank Cup 8 times, the Telkom (League) Cup once and the MTN Super Eight trophy a whopping nine times.
Between the teams their boast 21 league titles, 21 Nedbank Cup trophies, 14 Telkom Cup trophies and an incredible 24 MTN Super eight titles.
The Soweto derby is steeped in history and often the winner of the game could be catapulted into a Chiefs boast 16 million supporters, while Pirates sit at around the 10 million mark.
This roughly equates to almost half of all the football supporters in the country and that is why the derby is the biggest, most intense clash of any season.
Such is the intense nature of the pressure-laden derby that exactly half of all the league clashes between the sides has ended in a stalemate. Chiefs have the wood over the Buccaneers in the win column picking up three points on 16 occasions to the 6 wins for Pirates.
The derby is well known for its propensity for producing draws, and many punters can look at history when deciding on what result to mark when the giants meet.
Chiefs dominate all the stats of win-records in all the cup competitions but while they are the more successful side on paper, every match is a frenetic affair.
Over the years both Chiefs and Pirates have played out the derby at one of two fields, namely the FNB Stadium and the Orlando Stadium. Due to the size of the FNB Stadium (85 000+ capacity) almost two thirds of the matches have been contested at the venue that hosted the Soccer World Cup final in 2010.
Prestigious media publication fourfourtwo ranked the Chiefs vs Pirates derby as the 31st biggest in the world.
Over the 50 years of contesting the toughest match in Africa there have been many classic clashes and dramatic moments.
The overall records head-to-head show that of 166 games, Chiefs have won 67, Pirates 41, 52 draws and five game abandonment, including the tragedy at Ellis Park, which saw more than 40 supporters die when tens of thousands of non-ticket-holders tried to rush the fencing around the stadium.
The biggest winning margin came back in 1972 with Chiefs running out 7-3 winners.
There have also been two 5-1 drubbings inflicted on Pirates (1975, 1990).
Pirates’ player Happy Jele has the most appearances in the derby (25) while legendary Chiefs striker Ace Ntsoelengoe banged in 19 goals.
The match is without a doubt a showstopper and when the fixtures are announced each year by the league, fans, pundits and players mark that down in their diary.