Orlando Pirates head coach Milutin 'Micho' Sredojevic says his charges are motivated ahead of their clash with Highlands Park.
The Soweto giants are scheduled to host Highlands in their first Premier Soccer League (PSL) match of the 2018/19 campaign on Saturday.
Micho is wary of the Lions of the North, who are under the guidance of former Pirates coach Owen Da Gama.
"Highlands Park have a respected coach in Owen da Gama. We played friendly matches with them," Sredojevic told the media.
The Lions of the North are back in the PSL after winning last season's National First Division (NFD) title under Da Gama's guidance.
They have been one of the busiest teams in the current transfer window having made 12 new signings including former Kaizer Chiefs defender Bevan Fransman.
"But things have changed. They signed players. We don't know what will happen, but we are motivated," he continued.
"We feel like a fish out of water during the pre-season. The PSL is our water and we are ready to swim," the 48-year-old added when speaking at Bucs' training ground, Rand Stadium.
The Serbian tactican also confirmed that their new goalkeeper Brillint Khuzwayo will be out for three to four weeks with an ankle injury.
"Goalkeepers are important. They save you a lot of points a season. Brilliant Khuzwayo will be out for some time," Sredojevic said.
Sredojevic will have to choose between between experienced keepers Siyabonga Mpontshane, Jackson Mabokgwane and Wayne Sandilands at the Orlando Stadium on Saturday.
"We wish him a speedy recovery so he can fight for his place. The keepers, who are here know our game model," he added.
The former Al Hilal Omdurman coach confirmed that the club is looking to sign the Brazilian defender Caio Marcelo, who has been on trial at the Houghton-based side.
"We were very impressed by the Brazilian defender. An update will come. Everything is in process," he revealed.
The 20-year-old central defender was on the books of Brazilian side CR Vasco Da Gama last season.