Orlando Pirates give injury update ahead of MTN8 clash

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Mulenga has been dealing with a bout of flu, while Qalinge nears a return to action

Ahead of their highly anticipated MTN8 Cup quarter-final clash against SuperSport United, Orlando Pirates have provided an injury update on their key players.

The Soweto giants have announced that attacker Luvuyo Memela is nearing full fitness, but remains doubtful for the clash on Saturday night.

Memela suffered a knee injury during their pre-season friendly match against Cape Town City and is now getting ready to return to action whilst Thabo Qalinge is still out nursing an abductor injury.

According to a statement released by the club's medical team on Friday, Zambian attacker Augustine Mulenga is also suffering with a bout of flu which kept him out of their second 2018/19 Premier Soccer League (PSL) match against Chippa United on Wednesday.

Moreover, the Soweto giants announced that goalkeeper Brilliant Khuzwayo's knee surgery has been a success.

“According to the medical team, Amigo (Memela) has been working hard in his rehabilitation programme and is now allowed to partake in some team training sessions,” Pirates revealed in a statement issued on their website. 

“The 30-year old (Memela) has been out since picking up a knee strain in the club’s 1-0 defeat to Cape Town City back in May. He is now nearing full fitness which can only bode well for the left-footer and the technical team,” added the club.

“As reported last week, goalkeeper Brilliant Khuzwayo was due to undergo corrective surgery on his ankle. Khuzwayo’s surgery was a success and the goalkeeper is undergoing rehabilitation with the Bucs medical staff,” concluded the statement.

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Coach Milutin Sredojevic could be tempted to start with Siyabonga Mpontshane between the goals after keeping a clean sheet against the Chilli Boys especially after Wayne Sandilands' howler against Highlands Park last weekend at home.

On the other hand, the tournament's reigning champions also started the new season with a loss to Benni McCarthy's men, but bounced back to beat Golden Arrows in their midweek PSL match.

The quarter-final encounter at the Orlando Stadium on Saturday night is set to be a thriller as coach Kaitano Tembo will want to defend their crown, but Pirates are out to end their trophy drought this term.

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