As the Nedbank Cup reaches its last 16 stage, Orlando Pirates coach Jose Riveiro is adamant about not underestimating their upcoming opponents, Hungry Lions.

The clash is set to take place at the iconic Orlando Stadium on Saturday evening.

Hungry Lions, hailing from the Northern Cape and competing in the Motsepe Foundation Championship, present a challenge for Pirates, marking the first encounter between the two sides. Despite being a lower-tier club, Lions have showcased their potential in the competition.

Pirates, the defending champions, have had a solid journey in this year’s edition, notably overcoming Crystal Lake with a dominant 6-0 victory in the previous round. However, Riveiro remains cautious, emphasizing the importance of approaching the game with respect and focus.

Reflecting on the team’s preparation, Riveiro acknowledges the significance of recent experiences, including their victory over Soweto rivals Kaizer Chiefs. Yet, he emphasizes that such accomplishments do not grant them undue advantage against Lions.

Having closely studied Lions’ performances, Riveiro acknowledges their competitive spirit under the guidance of coach Henry Basie. Lions currently sit sixth on the log in the National First Division (NFD), showcasing a blend of experience and talent within their ranks.

Riveiro acknowledges the balanced nature of the upcoming match, noting Lions’ structured defensive approach and their capacity to pose threats on the counter. He highlights the speed and quality within the Lions’ squad, anticipating a challenging encounter where every player will strive to make an impact.

Lions, having navigated through the preliminary rounds, have demonstrated their resilience and capability, setting the stage for an intriguing showdown against Pirates. With recent league results indicating Lions’ competitive edge, the clash promises to be a test of skill and determination for both sides.

As Pirates aim to defend their title, they face a challenge in Hungry Lions, a team hungry for success and eager to make their mark in the Nedbank Cup.