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'Pirates need to keep a clean sheet'

Buccaneers face Al Ahly at Orlando Stadium in the first-leg of the CAF finals.

Orlando Pirates logo. Picture: Supplied

JOHANNESBURG - Orlando Pirates ex-defender, Gavin Lane, believes that if the team are to win the first leg final of the CAF Champions league, they will need to sacrifice individual brilliance for the team.

The Buccaneers take on Al Ahly in the first leg of the CAF Champions league final at Orlando Stadium in Soweto.

Lane has advised the side that if they are to win, they need to work together and play as a team.

"I don't really believe in individual play and I think that was our great success in 1995. We had great individual players, but we worked as a team, from goalkeeper to strikers. No matter who plays in what position and how, team effort matters."

Gavin Lane, who played when the team won the competition in 1995, says the side must keep it tight at the back so they have something to fight for in the second leg.

"I'd expect Roger de Sa to tell all the players to keep their feet firmly on the ground. You don't want to go out there and concede a silly goal. A normal draw is still a good result, keep a clean sheet."

Coach Roger De Sa has encouraged his team to play to their strengths as they prepare to take on the defending champions.

"It's a difficult game, you can imagine playing against Al Ahly, and they have won the entire continental award. So we have a very difficult task at hand, but we have come through it very well so far. It's an experience of a lifetime for us and from here we can only try our best.

For Daine Klate, the final will represent a chance for him to capture the one title that has eluded him.

He says while he is happy for the opportunity to add to his trophy cabinet, he is more focused on the team glory.

"It's probably going to be one of the biggest that I would ever been involved in and the club as well. This is the highest prestige you can get and the highest honour anyone can have. It would be good for the team to have the second star and once that's there we can then look at personal glory. But for now my focus is on giving my all for the team."

Meanwhile, Pirates Captain Happy Jele says even if they fail to win on Saturday, they've done what they have set out to achieve.

Jele says they're living their dream and all preparations are going according to plan.

Despite the extra spotlight being shined on them, legendary striker Jerry Sikhosana says the team will not fail under the weight of the country expectations.

"No, I don't think it puts a lot of pressure. Remember Pirates are also representing the whole of Southern Africa. So I think they know who they are playing against and what to expect, so it's not something new to them."

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