Caf Champions League: Lorch key to Orlando Pirates' hopes - Sredojevic

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Thembinkosi Lorch of Orlando Pirates against FC Platinum, March 2019
The experienced coach will be banking on his star player's creativity when the Buccaneers take on the Eagles this weekend

Orlando Pirates head coach Milutin 'Micho' Sredojevic has stressed the importance of having a player like Thembinkosi Lorch in his team.

The Soweto giants are set to take on Zambian side Green Eagles in the 2019/20 Caf Champions League preliminary round first-leg match on Saturday.

Many Pirates fans including Sredojevic are hoping Lorch carries on from where he left off last season.

The Serbian tactician feels Lorch has improved as a player and he always fights for the team on the field of play.

“He has grown a lot and you can see that he always fights for the team," Sredojevic told Caf's official website.

"He is a player with a lot of creativity and as a team, we are proud to have him."

Lorch was able to carry his form from club level to the national team at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) finals as he scored the only goal which helped Bafana Bafana defeat hosts Egypt.

Sredojevic is under pressure to deliver Bucs' first major trophy since 2014 and he is banking on Lorch's form to inspire the team to success in the new campaign.

“As a team, we are looking forward to competing in the league and the Champions League and Lorch is one of our key players,” he added.

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Lorch will be fresh and eager to return to the pitch after being rested in Pirates’ opening PSL match of the season against Bloemfontein Celtic.

The Buccaneers overcame Celtic 3-1 without Lorch as Augustine Mulenga, Innocent Maela and Frank Mhango scored the goals at Orlando Stadium.

The 25-year-old Lorch is expected to start against the 2019 Zambian Super League runners-up Eagles at Nkoloma Stadium in Lusaka.