Orlando Pirates winger Kudakwashe Mahachi says the team will enjoy huge support in Zimbabwe on Saturday.
The Buccaneers are set to take on Zimbabwean side FC Platinum in the first game of the 2018/19 Caf Champions League Group B at the Barbourfields Stadium in Bulawayo.
"Everybody in Bulawayo supports Orlando Pirates. We grew up watching the team and supporting players like Teko Modise and Joseph Kamwendo, who were an inspiration to watch,” Mahachi told the club's official website.
The 24-year-old attacker, who has hit form at the Soweto giants having scored in the team's last two league matches, revealed that his former club Highlanders FC modelled themselves around Pirates.
“The team I even played for while I was based there, Highlanders FC, modelled themselves around Orlando Pirates. They even adopted the club’s iconic crossbones salute before the start of their matches," he continued.
Highlanders are one of the biggest clubs in Zimbabwe having clinched seven league titles, and Mahachi spent some time with the club, before joining Mamelodi Sundowns in 2014.
“I have been inundated with calls from back home telling me that they are excited over the prospect of seeing Orlando Pirates play in Bulawayo," he continued.
"They are telling me that they are 100% behind us. They have also been inquiring about the likes of Thembinkosi Lorch, Vincent Pule and the rest of the guys because they follow the team religiously,” he added.
Mahachi warned his Bucs team-mates not to underestimate the Platinum Boys, who have won the last two Zimbabwean league titles.
“We can’t underestimate FC Platinum. They are a quality side with a pedigree having won the league in Zimbabwe,” Mahachi said.
“We can expect them to come hard at us. Their game is almost similar to ours because they also enjoy playing with the ball on the ground and keeping possession," he explained.
“It should be an interesting game on the weekend," he concluded.