Derby debuts for young Bucs

Meshack Motloung

Meshack Motloung

Orlando Pirates are likely to be at a disadvantage when they host Kaizer Chiefs in the premier South African derby at Kings Park Rugby Stadium tomorrow.

Most of the Bucs players will be making their derby debuts in this historic game before an estimated 23 million European viewers and the entire South African nation.

But their youngsters are taking this encounter as a major challenge and have vowed to prove a point when they meet their more experienced opponents in this soccer extravaganza.

The encounter takes on added importance for most of the players who will be in action, because of the exposure that goes beyond these shores.

A game of this magnitude is bound to have that air of euphoria and it is hoped the two sides will not disappoint but display their magnificent brand of football to the delight of the fans and Fifa's president Sepp Blatter, who will be in the stands.

The entire country will probably come to a standstill and no mortal will be seen moving in the streets when the opening whistle sounds in this game that many could rightly refer to as the battle of the titans.

And when the hour arrives, many soccer pundits will be glued to their television sets, while others listen to the radio for the outcome.

It will be one of the biggest days on the South African soccer calendar.

Pirates captain Lehlohonolo Seema said: "Playing before a big crowd is motivating in itself. Our team is young and pacey, and we're looking for a win more than anything else."

Goalkeeper Senzo Meyiwa said: "I would love to play against my friend Itumeleng Khune [Chiefs' goalkeeper] if I'm fielded. I'll do my best for the coach, our supporters and management."

Lindekuhle Mkhwanazi said: "It has been my wish to play in a derby, one of the biggest in the country. As a result I have invited my parents and sisters to come and see me in action."

Chiefs captain Cyril "S'khokho" Nzama said: "It's not going to be easy, but as a leader I have to lead from the front. Our position on the log is unenviable, we have to win to move up the league log."

David Obua said: "We respect Pirates because it is one of the biggest teams. It's going to be tough, but we don't worry about young players, we want the full points."