Micho banking on CAF experience

THE experience Milutin Sredojevic gathered on the continent in the past will be vital for Orlando Pirates,Picture: Gallo Images

THE experience Milutin Sredojevic gathered on the continent in the past will be vital for Orlando Pirates when they start their CAF Champions League campaign next year, says the coach.

Sredojevic, who qualified Pirates for the Champions League in his first season in charge, has got experience in continental football. He has been in charge of the Uganda national team and a few other teams.

Sredojevic said he will be banking on that experience as he wants the Soweto giants to make their mark again. “We are looking forward to carry the flag high and as far as I learnt in the continent, as a person to be in a lake full of crocodiles called African football,” Sredojevic said.

“I know how to swim there from all the aspects from Morocco down to Cape Town up to Cairo. Also, coach Rhulani Mokwena has amazing experience from Mamelodi Sundowns. “For us, once in the middle of December when we get the opposition we will plan accordingly. The first target is to enter the group stages and from there we want to go to quarterfinals and all the way.”

Pirates finished second on the PSL log standings this season. “This is the dream I had as a coach when I arrived in Africa 18 years ago. My first dream went through – I have been coaching in the Africa Cup of Nations representing countries that have been there before.

“I very touched when Rhulani mentioned to chairperson Irvin Khoza when we met with him for the first time that he was only a small boy when Pirates won in 1995. “He was honoured and privileged when he (Irvin Khoza) carried that trophy in 1995 in front of his house when the bus stopped.

“So it is a special motivation and instead of talking, we will act and we will do our best to put one more star on the jersey.”

With Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane already suggesting that Pirates will struggle to compete for the league title as they will be competing in the continental competition, Sredojevic believes they have enough quality to prove him wrong.

“We are personal friends and if we have something I will tell him face to face. He knows that even before their match against Waydad Casablanca. Otherwise, I have nothing to talk about, I just think about Pirates.” 

 -NEVILLE KHOZA|nevillek@afrotone.co.za