Orlando Pirates - Al Ahly Preview: Buccaneers target win in Caf Champions League showdown
Orlando Pirates will look to use home advantage and defeat a powerful Al Ahly side on Sunday afternoon, in order to finally seal their berth into the semi-final stage
By Daniel Eslick
Jele, Lekgwathi, Sangweni, Matlaba
Klate, Manyisa, Masalesa, Segolela
Fathy, Gomaa, Moawad, Samir
Ashour, El Said, Soliman, Abo trika
The Buccaneers are aiming to be the first South African side to reach the semi-final stages of the tournament since 2006. Pirates were the last team to reach the last four, losing 1-0 on aggregate to CS Sfaxien over two legs.
Roger de Sa's charges have suffered from injury and suspension set-backs to key players, which culminated in two away losses to Zamalek and AC Leopards.
Andile Jali is still out of action and will not take to the pitch on Sunday, but De Sa will welcome back full-backs Happy Jele and Thabo Matlaba from suspension.
Victory will ensure that Pirates top Group A, which means the Buccaneers will avoid Tunisian giants Esperance and face Coton Sport in the semi-finals. However, a draw could also suffice for Pirates if AC Leopards fail to defeat Zamalek in El Gouna.
Speaking to the press ahead of the match, Roger de Sa is relishing a chance to play Bayern Munich in the World Club Champs.
“This is why we play football, why we compete, we want to have these moments,” De Sa said ahead of the match, "Six months ago nobody thought we'd be this close to the semifinals and now we just have to grab this opportunity.
“If you do win the Champions league you get to play in the World Club Champs, can you imagine Pirates playing Bayern Munich? That would be fantastic.”
Al Ahly are the form team in the group, sealing three wins in a row to surge up to 10 points and usurp Pirates at the summit of the group standings.
Players like Waleed Soliman, Mohammed Abo Trika and Ahmed Zaher have found their goal-scoring touch, as the Egyptian Giants have begun to live up to their favourites tag.
Ahly coach Mohamed Youssef will urge his outfit to defeat Pirates, in order to secure top spot and gain revenge for their heavy 3-0 defeat in El Gouna.
Read about all the action LIVE on Goal South Africa with kickoff at 15:30.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Orlando Pirates looked to have virtually secured their spot in the semi-final stage of the tournament after defeating Zamalek and Al Ahly, but two straight losses on the road means the final group game will decide their fate.
- Al Ahly faltered in the early stages of the group fixtures, but bounced back to defeat AC Leopards home and away. The defending champions then defeated rivals Zamalek 4-2.
- Emad Moteab is Al Ahly's top scorer in the tournament, while Sifiso Myeni three goals makes him Pirates most prolific goal-getter.
- Orlando Pirates defeated Al Ahly 3-0 in Egypt during the fasting month of Ramadan.
- The Egyptian league is still being postponed due to the political violence in the North African country.
Top 3 Predictions
Orlando Pirates 1-2 Al Ahly
- 14.2 %
Orlando Pirates 0-2 Al Ahly
- 13.02 %
Orlando Pirates 2-1 Al Ahly
- 10.06 %
|Africa - CAF Champions League (CAFL)||10 Nov 2013||Al Ahly 2 - Orlando Pirates 0|
|Africa - CAF Champions League (CAFL)||02 Nov 2013||Orlando Pirates 1 - Al Ahly 1|
|Africa - CAF Champions League (CAFL)||22 Sep 2013||Orlando Pirates 0 - Al Ahly 0|
|Africa - CAF Champions League (CAFL)||04 Aug 2013||Al Ahly 0 - Orlando Pirates 3|
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|12 Mar 2014||Moroka Swallows FC 0 - Orlando Pirates 1||PSL|
|08 Mar 2014||Pretoria University FC 1 - Orlando Pirates 0||PSL|
|01 Mar 2014||Orlando Pirates 2 - Free State Stars FC 0||PSL|
|25 Feb 2014||Mamelodi Sundowns FC 0 - Orlando Pirates 1||PSL|
|14||Lucky Letlhohonolo Lekgwathi||Defender|
|28||Rooi Petros Mahamutsa||Defender|
|23||Tlou Mashedi Segolela||Midfielder|
|-||Lennox Luyanda Bacela||Striker|
|27||Terence Mpho Makola||Midfielder|
|18||Thulasizwe Moses Mbuyane||Striker|
|4||Sherif Abd Elfadil||Defender|
|-||Abdulla Ali Saeed||Defender|
|22||Mohammed Abu Trika||Midfielder|
|-||Ahmed Abdul Zaher||Striker|
|-||Dominique Da Silva||Striker|