Having travelled the length and breadth of the African continent, through insurmountable odds, Orlando Pirates has proudly carried the South African flag all the way to the final of the CAF Confederation Cup. The Mighty Buccaneers took on the likes of Zamalek SC, AC Leopards and CS Sfaxien, while also slaying Cairo giants Al Ahly along the way. These all being sides that the Club has faced in previous CAF competitions.
Orlando Pirates will now be faced with the task of taking on a lesser known but just as formidable opponent in Tunisian side, Etoile Du Sahel. Their pedigree beyond reaching this year’s final is not to be understated, as they too, have a CAF Champions League victory under their belt. A feat achieved in the 2007 edition, vanquishing no less of an opponent than Al Ahly, with a resounding 3-1 aggregate over two legs.
Orlando Pirates Head Coach Eric Tinkler is all too aware of the fact that while the pageantry of a final exists, there is a bigger story at play, given that this is the one CAF trophy missing from the Buccaneers mantle, to complete the continental trinity (1995 CAF Champions’ League and 1996 Super Cup trophy).
“This is a massive opportunity for the Club and everyone involved, to win a major trophy such as the CAF Confederation Cup. Orlando Pirates is a big Club with a rich history and it is an honour to be part of that history. Naturally we would like nothing better than to positively contribute to the legacy of the Club.”
“Etoile du Sahel has earned itself a place in the final by beating the best; we cannot afford to underestimate or downplay that achievement. We are going into this match with a positive frame of mind because it is vitally important for us to win the home leg and ensure that we do not concede a goal in order to have something to protect for the second leg,” concluded Tinkler.