Orlando Pirates head coach, Milutin ‘Micho’ Sredojevic, has lauded Zimbabwean side FC Platinum for their impressive showing in their match on the weekend.
The Buccaneers were held to a 0-0 draw against the Zimbabwean outfit in their CAF Champions League first group stage match in front of a packed Barbourfields Stadium in Bulawayo on Saturday.
The match results on Saturday meant that all the teams in Group B are tied on one point each, after reigning African champions Esperance of Tunisia drew 1-1 away to Pirates’ next opponents, Horoya AC of Guinea, in their match played on Friday.
Speaking to Zimbabwean media after the match, Micho praised the opponents for Saturday's match while also predicting a good tournament for them.
“We played against a very good competitive team, it was like a game of chess where we really needed to take care of every detail. It is two Anglophone and two Francophone teams in our group and now if you have that in mind, we wish FC Platinum all the best (in their next match against Esperance),” Sredojevic has been quoted by Zimbabwe’s The Herald.
“I would say the group is wide open (all) the teams drew and there is a lot of football to be played. They (FC Platinum) are going to Esperance and we are waiting for Horoya,” the coach told the media.
“With the quality they have, the commitment they have, I need to tell you that I know this country very well (and) I respect this country very well. I remember the situation in 2008 nobody expected it when Dynamos went and beat the champions that year, Etoile du Sahel, and qualified to the group stages if you still remember,” said the Bucs mentor.
“Everything is really open. I wish them all the best. They are a good team with good players and a good coach (Norman Mapeza). They come from a good footballing country, I really wish (them) all the best. I need to tell that from the goalkeeper (Petros) Mhari to (Mkokheli) Dube upfront they were all extremely impressive. It was a team effort and they played very well against us. In respect to my colleague, coach and the players I will not go to individual players I will just say they have great players who played some good football,” concluded the Serbian tactician.
In their next Champions League match, the Buccaneers are scheduled to host Horoya at the Orlando Stadium on Friday from 18h00, while FC Platinum will be away to Esperance also on Friday night.