Orlando Pirates expecting ‘totally different Zamalek’ in Champions League tie

Ahram Online, Friday 30 Aug 2013

Orlando Pirates captain believes Zamalek will be tough to beat in Sunday’s African Champions League clash in the Egyptian Red Sea resort of El-Gouna

Zamalek have no option but to beat Orlando Pirates at home (Photo: Ahram)

Egypt’s Zamalek are likely to be stiff opponents when they host Orlando Pirates on Sunday despite the embarrassing 4-1 defeat they suffered at the hands of the South African outfit away from home, Pirates skipper Lucky Lekgwathi said.

Zamalek’s hopes of reaching the semi-final of the African Champions League were dealt a blow earlier this month when they were outclassed by Orlando Pirates in a largely one-sided affair in Johannesburg.

The Cairo giants, who collected a solitary point from their opening three Group A games, have no option but to beat Pirates in the Red Sea resort of El-Gouna to keep alive their hopes of booking a last-four berth.

“They [Zamalek] have not been doing well but they know that a win for us on Sunday will definitely complicate things for them,” defender Lekgwathi said on Pirates’ official website.

“I anticipate a totally different team from the one we beat in Johannesburg. The good thing for us is that going to this match we go with a broad understanding of the team we will be up against. They are not a closed book to us and that sometimes helps in football.

“Our wish and objective for this match is nothing but a win – we can win the match in Cairo. Please keep us in your prayers as we go to battle against a very well organised side.”

A victory for Pirates, who top the group with seven points, will put them on the verge of a semi-final place.

“I have won all trophies in our domestic league and the prospect of qualifying for the semi-finals of the ACL this year has given me motivation to inspire the rest of the guys and continue fighting,” Lekgwathi added.

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