Orlando Pirates coach Roger de Sa lavished praise on Ahly after the title holders ensured their progress to the African Champions League semifinal with one match to spare in Group A.
South Africa’s Pirates will be looking for a home win over already-qualified Ahly on Sunday as they vie with Congo’s AC Leopards for the other semi-final ticket.
“It is again for us a match against a well-respected team in the continent. The guys have already qualified and that just shows the pedigree of the side,” De Sa said on Pirates’ official website.
“Despite the problems they have in their country they are able to focus and play really well. In that match we are the ones with a job in hand.”
Pirates are level on seven points with Leopards, three behind leaders Ahly, who only need a draw to advance as the group winners.
The Red Devils suffered a humiliating 3-0 defeat by Pirates last month in the Red Sea resort of El-Gouna, which marked their biggest-ever home defeat in Africa’s elite club competition.
“We have to prepare and get ready to dig deep on Sunday. A win is a must for us so we will take the game to them and look to bag three points at the end of 90 minutes,” De Sa added.
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