Orlando Pirates head coach Milutin Sredojevic says they will ensure that Zambian strikers Augustine Mulenga and Justin Shonga are ready for the Soweto Derby following Chipolopolo's failure to qualify for the 2019 Caf Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) finals.
The Serbian coach was speaking to the media ahead of their Telkom Knockout Cup semi-final encounter against Kaizer Chiefs on Saturday afternoon.
"You know, a big country like Zambia for a second consecutive time does not go to Africa Cup of Nations and it is a huge setback,” Sredojevic said.
The Chipolopolo are still licking their wounds after losing 1-0 to Mozambique last weekend in a qualifier and the loss has meant their hopes of reaching the finals are dashed as they have three losses in their group.
“We have received them and for them it's like the end of the world, but fully aware that life is still ahead of them and they can still serve the nation in the best possible way in 2021,” continued the coach.
Moreover, the coach added that a disappointment such as the one facing the 2012 African champions could be erased by the upcoming Soweto Derby in Durban.
"I have strong belief that when the disappointment comes of losing something, if you have too much time without action then it's too much in your head and it's killing you,” he added.
The former Uganda national team coach hopes the best way to wash out the duo's disappointment is to get the players ready for the eagerly anticipated clash.
“But when the match comes the best way to wash out the pain is by doing everything you are supposed to do on the pitch," concluded 'Micho'.