Lions will host Steel United at Jenkins Park on Saturday looking to bounce back after their big loss in the first round.
Lions were good in their first half against Croatia two weeks ago but capitulated in the second, coaches Trowbridge and Murphy will be wanting a 90 minute performance this week if they are to pinch the points here.
Joel Niemann is a strong midfielder with a good touch and passing ability, he'll play a pivotal part in this game and the Lions’ season.
Steel United got their championship defence off to a great start with a 4-2 defeat of the Red Devils in round one with Anthony Joslyn banging in all four.
Captain Logan Green is Steel United through and through , he's been a superb servant to the club and still one of the stars of the competition.
The last time these teams met Lions won 3-2.
I think this could be close again but with Lions missing Kinnear and Howard-Bristrow, Steel should get over the line this time.
In Sunday's game, Westland United will tackle Wanderers in the Broadbent Terrace derby at Dakalanta Park with both sides looking to get their league season off and running.
Westlands have been good so far this year with results not reflecting the soccer they are playing.
With Papoulis having a break from the game Westlands will need to share the goals around with Edmondson, Rhodes, Mitchell, Dunn, Robinson and Jackson all capable of chipping in to cover the 20 plus goals Dion provided.
Wanderers are the only team yet to sing the team song so far this year but you get a feeling it's not far away with coach McEwan seeing steady progress with every game.
One problem for the blues is that they haven't played a competitive match in nearly a month and could go into this game a little underdone.
It's great to see David Ratzlaf back after a two year absence from an ACL injury.
At his peak he was one of the premier players in the league and will be hoping to reach that peak again.
Another close one again but Westlands at home should get over the line.
In other news the annual amateur soccer match between Wanderers and Lions will be held at Swandel Park on Friday night with kickoff at at 6.30pm.
Come see the players of yesteryear with Hunt, Peat , Shepherd and five-time watch winner Kelly for the blues.
Lions will field a tough side as well with former player of the year Cammarota, Leach, McEwan and father-and-son duo Pat and Paul Finnigan.
The last game ended up 7-5 Wanderers’ way in the pouring rain, so there should be plenty of goals.