Why Orlando Pirates ‘have to beat’ Al-Ittihad

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Co-coach Mandla Ncikazi believes Orlando Pirates are prepared to win their final group game in the Caf Confederation Cup and keep their roll going.

Pirates have already secured passage to the quarterfinals but the result will have significance for the outcome of the group.

Orlando Pirates out to win

Ncikazi doesn’t want the team to lose momentum at this stage of the campaign.

“I think they’re [Saoura] a very strong team and I think they’ll qualify because when we go back to South Africa, we’ll play Al-Ittihad with our best team, try to play a professional game,” said Ncikazi.

“We’re playing at home, we have to win the match. I’m happy that our team played and qualified. We’re not going to change anything, we going to play to win and get 15 points if it’s possible.

Ncikazi also said: “We’re a professional side, we’re going to play Ittihad and play to win. We’re going to field our strong team, strong side so that we win the match.

“To us, all matches are played to win, that’s the team, that’s a professional side. It’s not going to be an easy match but we’re going to play our best team and we’re going to play to win.”

iDiski Times

Al-Ittihad are the only team in the group that has beaten Orlando Pirates to date.

Sea Robbers have the wind in their sails

Pirates secured a morale-boosting win over Saoura with 10 men following a red card to Goodman Mosele and that appears to have given them newfound confidence.

“A very difficult team, Saoura is a very good team. I thought we played well, asserted ourselves well,” Ncikazi said.

“Maybe Saoura were unlucky that they’ve got players suspended, the captain, number 25, was suspended, Amran was suspended, the two centre-backs.

“And I thought it worked in our favour. But they were still a good team. [Aimen] Lahmri on the left, number 11, good player. [Belaid] Hamidi, good player. [Ismail] Saadi on top, good player.”

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