What you need to know ahead of Voda Play-offs

The Vodacom League Play-offs this year will attract huge interest, because of the nationalisation of the First Division next season.

The Inland and Coastal Streams system that has been used for the past four years is to be dumped, and because of that the value of a First Division franchise will skyrocket.

Additionally, there will be a world of difference between the second and third tiers, which is pushing the nine provincial finalists to make the most of the Finals, being played in Cape Town from June 7-12.

Today we introduce you to the final three teams that will compete for a place in the First Division.

Click HERE, HERE and HERE for the previous team profiles. COASTAL NORTHERN CAPE – Real Madrid The South African version of Real Madrid has done what their Spanish compatriots failed to do – winning the League!

Madrid won their region with 75 points, just one ahead of Steach United.

The team have had to put up with a boardroom tussle brought about by Steach, who wanted a replay of one of their games played earlier in the season, which they were forced to be abandoned with the scores 2-2.

Engineer Lucky Moyahi owns the team, and it is coached by Olebohang Wesi with Berent Muchanga second in charge.

Based in Kimberly, they play their home games in the township of Galeshewe and have goalkeeper Raymond Steyn along with midfielder Thabiso Mhlanga as the star players, along with PSL rejects Ronald Kelly, Daniel Madebe, and David Kopane.

The club was initially established in 1987 but underwent a change of ownership five years ago after which they gained promotion from the SAB League in 2008.

They went on to win the Vodacom League the following year and reached the Nedbank Cup last 32 where they lost to Peace Lovers.

This year they have a second bite of the cherry as they attempt to have the Northern Cape represented in the First Division. Madrid are nicknamed Valentines’ Boys, because of their red and white strip.

FREE STATE – Roses United Roses United won this Stream but still lodged a protest after they had a game away at Sasolburg Juventus abandoned, after rugby players playing on an adjoining pitch drove through the soccer field following the completion of their own match.

The club is owned by businessman Max Tshabalala, and stands out from the rest because of the way it is run and the high salaries paid to players, which explain why they have been champions of the province for the past two years.

Roses have retired keeper John Tlale as head coach assisted by Moses Gidiza, with Benjamin Reed serving as technical director.

Based in the Bloemfontein suburb of Bayswater, they play home games at Westdene Sports Ground.

One-time Bloemfontein Celtic player Patrick Setlai is captain, leading ex-PSL stars Lebohang Kukame, Ace Gulwa, Kamohelo Mabuya and Tumelo Nhlapo.

Established just two years ago, Roses United are poised for the professional ranks, and losing just once this season bears testimony to that.

KWAZULU-NATAL – Durban Stars The Phindani Nene-owned club was relegated from the First Division two years ago and have quietly been putting their house in order as they plot another return to the second tier.

They won the KZN Stream by an overwhelming 17 points, after having battled last season in their first year back in the third tier.

Head coach Ramadhan Nsanzurwimo has returned to the club and is now assisted by Alex Zondi, with long serving Nkosinathi Dlamuka still the captain.

Stars played their home games at the SJ Smith Stadium this season.