Let the ball roll
August 3 marks the official kick-off of the South African soccer calendar for the 2012-12 season.
The season opener, as always, is the much-vaunted MTN8 competition that pits last season's top eight teams against each other to see who is best.
So it is perhaps fitting that it is defending champions and last season's treble winners, Orlando Pirates, who get to do the honours of getting the new campaign off the ground.
The Mighty Buccaneers face a new-look Bloemfontein Celtic at Orlando Stadium in Soweto this evening. And all eyes are on them as football followers wait in anticipation of whether they will be able to repeat the heroics of the past two seasons.
The majority of Premier Soccer League clubs, with the exception of Moroka Swallows, have gone the extra mile to beef up their squads in order to be more competitive than before.
That augurs well for supporters since it shows the clubs' hunger for success and honours.
While other clubs are content with being also-rans or being there just to make up the numbers, others are ambitious and want to stand up and be counted as champions.
Going into the market and bidding for the best players around helps build the brand and to attract more supporters.
By the time others catch a wake up there wont be much available on the market and no one to blame.
Pirates have raised the bar and are obviously the team to beat. That's an enviable position to be in.
Let the games begin!