Saturday, April 13, 2024
HomeCAF Confederation CupIbenge: Pirates Are Also Here To Win

Ibenge: Pirates Are Also Here To Win

RS Berkane head coach Florent Ibenge says their win over TP Mazembe is no advantage against Orlando Pirates in the CAF Confederation Cup final.

Ibenge is embarking on his third CAF inter-club final of his career, having finished as runner-up in the same competition and the CAF Champions League with his former club AS Vita.

While he’s cognizant of the fact that Berkane, the 2019/20 champions come in with the confidence of an emphatic 4-1 win over his compatriots TP Mazembe, he played down that it can affect the outcome of the final as Pirates lost to Al Ahli 1-0 in their second leg semi-final last Sunday.

“The preparations [for the match] were only to restore physical strength, after the TP Mazembe match,” Ibenge said ahead of the game.

“We did well to read the game against TP Mazembe, and we avoided rushing and tried to tire the opponent’s players, and this paid off.

“For this match, we have reviewed tapes of the Orlando Pirates team in order to study the strengths and weaknesses of the South African team. In a final, it’s 50-50. Of course, having won gives us more confidence. But Orlando Pirates are also here to win. We have to be better in all areas: physically, technically and tactically.

Ibenge also spoke of the ‘hope’ of getting the home crowd of Akwa on their side for an advantage at the Godswil Akpabio Stadium this evening before addressing the dominance of Moroccan clubs in CAF competitions in recent years.

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“The league competition is strong in Morocco, especially for the third place that qualifies for the Confederation Cup. But we seek to win the league trophy so that we do not enter into the strong fight for the third place in the league,” Ibenge said.

“Morocco is a good training centre for coaches, and with regard to the vast academies in the country, they are important for discovering new players and even in the other aspects of the game, so we can find best sports doctors or competencies in other fields from them.”

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Lorenz Kohler
Lorenz Kohler
Lorenz Köhler is an award-winning South African football journalist. Having cut his teeth in the industry working at Kick-Off Magazine, he is now iDiski Times' senior digital content writer. He specialises in breaking top African football stories and transfers with a major focus on the 'big-three' Mamelodi Sundowns, Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates and CAF inter-club and international competitions. In 2021 he was listed amongst the top-five journalists under 30 in Print Media for the AIPS Awards.