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Njabulo Ngidi
1 minute read
17 Sep 2014
3:59 pm

Klate – Champions League bigger than Soweto derby

Njabulo Ngidi

Daine Klate admits that a Soweto derby cup final between Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs is a great occasion, but says the Buccaneers have played in bigger matches.

Medals galore: Daine Klate (Photo by Duif du Toit/Gallo Images)

The Pirates midfielder will be chasing his 13th winners’ medal in a successful 10-year footballing career. He could have been chasing his 14th had Pirates won the Caf Champions League where they lost to Egyptian giants Al-Ahly last year. But Klate argues that the side picked up some valuable experience in that campaign.

“There is a bigger stage than the Soweto derby. Al-Ahly. When we played them in Cairo in the final of the Champions League, the experience was something else,” Klate said.

“You hear their crowd singing. That for me, was one of the biggest games I have ever played. The stadium was electrifying. The game against TP Mazembe as well. There were no Orlando Pirates fans in the stands. We have been involved in bigger matches than the derby. For me, teams like Al-Ahly, Esperance are huge matches. Playing in Tunisia felt like being a part of the European Champions League. The atmosphere was electrifying.

“We ended up doing well, in the tournament. We held our own against Al-Ahly. The Champions League final was bigger than the derby. But now the (MTN8) final is the derby. It is important.”

That derby, which was sold out in hours, will be played at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on Saturday night in the MTN8 final.