Orlando Pirates must be very careful entering into the Green Eagles territory for the first leg of the Caf Champions League preliminary round.
The noise of battle keeps defeating as the count down to match day narrows and the dice is cast as the sea Robbers yesterday touched down in Zambia to face Green Eagles.
It’s a match many bookmakers have dabbed a David Vs Goliath match; a mission impossible for Green Eagles and every opinion is right in its own right but Pirates need to be careful with Eagles and this is why.
It will always be difficult to play a team of Green Eagles magnitude because of the self-belief boiling within their circles. The team is highly motivated and the players keep bubbling with stinking confidence.
Eagles almost stormed the group stages in their inaugural Champions league campaign last season and after fighting back into Africa, they believe it’s their time having tested the waters last season. They will play with their hearts on their sleeves and fight for every ball and this is where they can make life really complicated for Orlando Pirates.
While Orlando pirates will come breathing fire with a quicklightining and lethal front line of Mulenga, Shonga and Lorch, it will not be easy to play their game of free running and perpetual injection of pace. They play such quick and pacy football because their ground in Soweto is big, wide and vast.
The situation will be different at Nkoloma where the pitch is not as vast and wide as it is in Orlando. Several times we have seen Pirates failing to execute their game when playing away from home in some smaller pitches because there is little space for running with the ball. This will be the exact situation at Nkoloma.
Suffice to mention, Much as the Pirates attacking power can be destructive, Eagles boast of one of the most steadfast defence backlines in Africa.
Shonga and Lorch are quick but Gift Wamundila and Sunzu are equal to the task. Once Eagles doesn’t allow a goal, pressure will go back rolling on Orlando Pirates as they will play to avoid an away goal in the second leg. That will definitely destabilise their free attacking style of play even in their back yard.
Upfront, Pirates will have to keep some unblinking watch on TAPSON KASEBA a real rascal. He is strong on the ball and the power in his right foot can be disastrous once left unchecked.
Orlando Pirates will play Green Eagles in the first leg of the First round preliminary stage of the Champions League on Saturday.