Orlando Pirates coach Jose Riveiro has set his sights on defending the Nedbank Cup and securing a coveted second-place finish in the DStv Premiership standings.

Despite a significant 13-point gap between the Buccaneers and front-runners Mamelodi Sundowns, Riveiro remains undeterred, acknowledging the challenge and emphasizing the need to aim high.

Following a hard-fought 1-1 draw against Sundowns at Loftus Versfeld Stadium, Riveiro addressed the media, recognizing the considerable deficit but stressing the importance of finishing strong. “The distance with the top of the table is big, but we need to continue. We need to keep trying to compete in every league game,” Riveiro declared during the post-match press conference.

The coach expressed the team’s motivation to return to continental football, citing the Nedbank Cup as a vital avenue. “We are defending the title,” he asserted, highlighting the significance of the competition and the extra motivation it provides.

Reflecting on the challenging encounter with Sundowns, Riveiro acknowledged the necessity of adopting an aggressive approach. “You cannot pretend to compete with this team if you are not at the same level with them,” he explained. Recognizing Sundowns’ defensive prowess, Riveiro emphasized the need for the Buccaneers to match their intensity and commitment.

Looking ahead, Orlando Pirates gear up for their next league challenge against Polokwane City at Peter Mokaba Stadium, maintaining their relentless pursuit of success. With a strategic blend of aggression and tactical awareness, Riveiro’s squad eye both domestic and continental glory.