Mamelodi Sundowns finally caught up to Kaizer Chiefs, who surrendered their hold at the top of the table with just 31 minutes to play. In the end, the defending champions found a way to get back their trophy. Essentially, the 3-0 result over Polokwane City was a double edged sword – deciding the champions at one end of the table, and also deciding who would be relegated at the other end.
This week, we will be summarizing the season – club by club – by bringing you some of the most outstanding stats from what will forever be remembered as The Longest PSL Season.
399 – The 2019/20 season lasted 399* days, the longest season in PSL history (*153 days due to Covid-19 lockdown).
Top scorer: Bongi Ntuli (13 goals)
Biggest win: 2-0 v STE (H)
Biggest defeat: 0-3 v Wits (H) & v Sundowns (H)
Points swing from previous season: -7 (2nd worst team)
Position swing from last season: -3 (2nd worst of all sides)
For a while, Usuthu were in danger of a second relegation in six seasons, but survived after losing just one game in the bio-bubble and in Q4. The goals may have dried up for Bongi Ntuli as the season went on, but without his contributions, the KZN men would probably have gone down. They only won one game by 2+ goals, against the newly promoted Stellenbosch. Their -7 drop in points from last season was also the second worst of all sides (Polokwane -19).
65% – Ntuli scored 65% of his team’s goals in the league, the highest proportion any player has scored for his team in the league this season.
Top scorer: Evidence Makgopa (4 goals)
Biggest win: 2-0 v Leopards (H & A)
Biggest defeat: 1-4 v Supersport (A)
Points swing from previous season: 0
Bakgaga crashed the party & poured the champagne down the sink. They effectively decided the title race, with a draw against league leaders Chiefs. Without that point, they would currently be involved in the relegation playoffs. In many ways, Baroka haven’t moved from last season – neither progressing nor regressing. Last season, they also needed an equaliser in the last half hour of the last match to get a draw that secured 14th. Rinse. Repeat. 14th last season & 14th this season. 29 points last season & 29 points this season.
-9 – Baroka finished the season with a -9 goal difference, meaning they have conceded more goals than they scored in each of their four top-flight campaigns.
Top scorer: Mwape Musonda (9)
Biggest win: 3-2 v Maritzburg (H)
Biggest defeat: 3-0 v Chippa (A) & v Sundowns (A)
Points swing from previous season: -1
If they are successful in the playoffs, Leopards may still survive relegation. If they are not, they only have themselves to blame. To summarize their season, one may look at how they failed to compete in the key games against teams nearest them at the bottom of the table. AmaZulu, Baroka and Polokwane City were their closest rivals and their record in those matches reads:
Played 6 Won 0 Drew 1 Lost 5 Goals For: 1 Goals Against 8.
Technically, Leopards actually failed to score a goal in any of those 6 games – benefitting from an own goal against Polokwane City. They should have tried harder to win these games.
17 – This is the third time in their top-flight history that Leopards ended the season with 17 losses in a season. They were relegated on both occasions that they lost so many games.
Top scorer: Ndumiso Mabena (9 goals)
Biggest win: 5-0 v Arrows (H)
Biggest defeat: 3-5 v Chiefs (A)
Points swing from previous season: -1
Celtic finished 8th for the second successive season, and will participate in the CAF Confederation Cup next season, by virtue of qualifying for the Nedbank Cup final. A Top 8 place and a seat on the continental table may be just reward for a team that was entertaining, if not always effective. 78% of their wins came against the bottom four teams in the table, the highest proportion of all sides. They can still end their season with a win on Saturday night, in the Nedbank Cup final.
1.43 – Celtic were the joint second-top scorers in the league with 43 goals (only Chiefs had more goals). The 1.43 goals per game average this season is the best by a Celtic side in PSL history.
RELATED STORY: How Celtic shone despite off-field drama
By Opta Jabu