Johannesburg - Orlando Pirates coach Roger de Sa says he cannot guarantee a victory
but has promised his team will give 100 percent in the Caf Champions
League first-leg final fixture on Saturday.
"You don't know
what's going to happen in football," De Sa said on Tuesday, ahead of
Pirates' clash against Egyptian side Al-Ahly.
"I can't say whether we'll play well or badly, but the one thing that we know is that we'll try our best.
"We're going to give everything we have. These guys will run for 90 minutes plus and give it their best shot."
the only South African team to have won the continent's premier club
competition, would be bidding for a second Champions League title
against a team which has reached the final no fewer than 10 times.
lifted the then-named African Cup of Champions Clubs title in 1995,
beating ASEC Abidjan of the Ivory Coast 3-2 in a two-legged final.
Sa said Pirates would have to make the most of their home-ground
advantage during the first leg, making sure the visitors did not score,
before travelling to a hostile atmosphere in Cairo.
"I believe keeping a clean-sheet is important," De Sa said.
you're at home, it's important not to concede. But if you do concede,
you have to get on with it and score even more goals. It's important
that we keep it tight. If we can go to Egypt with something in the bag,
then we have a chance.
"But it's a long game, it won't end on Saturday night here in South Africa... it goes on."
would be the third meeting between the two teams in this year's
tournament after Pirates romped to a 3-0 victory in Egypt in August.
The Buccaneers then held the Egyptian giants to a goalless draw at Orlando Stadium in their last group fixture on September 22.
De Sa's unbeaten record against the Cairo 'Red Devils', the former Wits
University boss was adamant Ahly would be favourites to lift the trophy
for a record eighth time.
"I honestly believe Ahly are the favourites," he said.
think we have a 50-50 chance, without a doubt, but when you look at
where they've been and what they've done in this competition, we have to
be at our best.
"Ahly are a special side but we've got our strengths and we have a couple of things up our sleeves."
Sa said the team would be buoyed by their supporters, who turned out in
numbers following the Sea Robbers' return from Tunisia, where they
secured a score-draw against Esperance to book their place in the final.
"We just have to walk the streets and we get messages of support," De Sa said.
"Even the players we played against on Saturday from Kaizer Chiefs wished us well.
"From the beginning of the competition, we said it was not only about Pirates, but carrying the flag of the nation.
is probably for some of us, the closest we're going to come to
representing the nation. We have to do the best that we can and do it in
a proud manner."