Milutin Sredojevic: Why Happy Jele is key to Orlando Pirates' hopes of progression

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The former PSL Coach of the Month is expecting a difficult match against the Guinean giants in Conakry

Orlando Pirates head coach Milutin 'Micho' Sredojevic is banking on Happy Jele's experience ahead of their crucial clash with Guinean champions Horoya AC.

The Buccaneers are set to take on HAC in a must-win Caf Champions League Group B match at the Stade du 28 Septembre in Conakry, Guinea on Saturday, March 16.

Micho explained why the 1995 Champions League winners should not rely only on their experience on the continent.

"History is a teacher of life. We do look at history. However, at the moment, whatever I have done in African football won't play tomorrow (in the future)," Sredojevic told the media.

The Serbian trainer, who has won league titles in Ethiopia, Uganda and Sudan, is one of the most successful coaches on the continent.

Serdojevic guided Pirates and Sudanese giants Al Hilal Omdurman to the semi-finals of the 2006 Champions League, and 2010 Caf Confederation Cup respectively.

"What coach Rulani (Mokwena) did with Pitso at Mamelodi Sundowns in 2016 will not count. What Happy did with Pirates in 2013 and 2015 will also not count," he continued.

Mokwena served as Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane's assistant as the PSL giants clinched their maiden Champions League title in 2016.

Club captain and defender Jele helped Pirates finish as runners-up in the 2013 Champions League and 2015 Confederation Cup.

"It is a totally different ball game. You are only as good as your next game. So, there is a challenge ahead of us. We have the experience," he added.

"We are aware of that. However, we have to be the best possible ambassadors," the former St George and Villa SC head coach stressed.

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"At the same time, Happy has to be the extended hand of coaching on the pitch bearing in mind that he has the experience," Sredojevic explained.

"He is the commander of special forces. He is supposed to give that element of competitiveness that Africa demands otherwise Africa dismantles you," he concluded.

Pirates have to defeat Horoya in order to secure their place in the quarter-finals of the continental tournament.



 

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