Durban – Orlando Pirates will have an opportunity to ease their frustrations when they face off against Diables Noirs in their CAF Confederation Cup second preliminary round second leg at the Orlando Stadium in Soweto on Sunday.
The Soweto giants will be the favourites to advance from the tie as they will have home advantage and did not concede in the away leg last weekend as it ended 0-0.
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Concerning for the Sea Robbers is the fact that it does not look like they have resolved their attacking woes from last season. Pirates have only won two DSTV Premiership matches so far this season and enter their game against the Congolese side on the back of a 0-0 draw against Maritzburg United, a game that they should have won.
Not only did they dominate possession against the Team of Choice but more frustrating is the fact that they failed to win even though the Pietermaritzburg-based club played with ten men for much of the second half at the Harry Gwala Stadium.
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More concerning for the Soweto giants is the fact that they appear to have so far regressed under the management of co-coaches Mandla Ncikazi and Fadlu Davids. By contrast, they had not lost a game under Josef Zinnbauer at the corresponding phase of the season last term.
Diables Noirs also enter the game against Pirates in relatively good form so it is vital that Pirates do not take things for granted against the Congolese giants. If they do, they stand to be punished more heavily than they were against Maritzburg United. Diables Noirs are a physical side who will not hesitate to use their physical presence to intimidate the hosts.
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🏆 #TotalEnergiesCAFCC R2 Prelim 2nd Leg
⚽️ @orlandopirates vs CSMD Diables Noirs
📆 Sunday, 24 October 2021
🏟 Orlando Stadium
🕠 17h30 SAST
📺 LIVE BROADCAST exclusive to #OrlandoPirates Official App 👉![CDATA]>🏿 https://t.co/ruwb71nIVG
— Orlando Pirates FC (@orlandopirates) October 21, 2021
Pirates will need to ensure that they put their current low level of confidence behind them and strive to punish the away side with their superior technical prowess.
Diables Noirs are currently on a 13 game unbeaten run. The last time that they lost a match was when they were downed 1-0 by AS Otôho d’Oyo in May.
Should Pirates win the tie, some of the pressure will be relieved of the coaching hierarchy. Should they lose, serious questions will be asked about whether the team is capable of being led by Davids and Ncikazi.
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