Mhlongo to start in goal

Telkom Knockout

Speaking on radio to Duane Dell'Oca, Pirates assistant coach Eric Tinkler confirmed that Mhlongo will don the gloves in the Cup encounter at Orlando Stadium.

This is the Buccaneers’ first match since the tragic passing of first-choice goalkeeper Meyiwa almost two weeks ago.

And Mhlongo insists he is ready to take up the position between the sticks for the first team.

“I have been preparing myself really well for the opportunity to play here,” he told his club’s official website.

“I am not putting myself under pressure because I know I will have to go through some tough times here before the supporters welcome me like they did to all the other guys who were successful goalies here.”

READ: 'We have kept Brighton strong'

The 23-year-old believes he has been well-prepared by youth coach Augusto Palacios, and despite having big gloves to fill, hopes he can achieve success with his side.

“Mentally I am prepared – in the development Prof Augusto Palacios prepared us nicely to stand pressure and Saturday could be my day; so, I am prepared to play,” he said.

“It will be difficult to match what Senzo did here, but I know I have something different to offer to the team and to the fans.”

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