Jose Riveiro plays down Sibongiseni Mthethwa's departure at Stellenbosch ahead of the 2nd leg

Jose Riveiro plays down Sibongiseni Mthethwa's departure at Stellenbosch ahead of the 2nd leg

As Stellenbosch FC come to their first game without the services of their former influential midfielder Sibongiseni “OX” Mthethwa, Orlando Pirates head coach Jose Riveiro is adamant that his absence will have no bearing on their opponents.

The two teams lock horns again in the MTN8 second leg, semifinal at the Orlando stadium tomorrow afternoon, with the Buccaneers in the driving seat as they lead 2-1 from the first leg.

Stellies sold Mthethwa to Kaizer Chiefs two days ago after Amakhosi managed to trigger his buyout clause. The 29-year-old has been the heart of soul of that midfield, but Riveiro expects another player to rise.

"No, nothing is gonna change for us. We know Mthethwa and what he's capable of but for sure there's gonna be somebody who's gonna try to prove that they are on the same level to play in that position, to play for Stellenbosch and be the next Mthethwa. We all have replacements so they are gonna play with 11 players, for us in terms of approach it's gonna be the same," Riveiro said.

Pirates are also coming up against a troubled Stellies team, the team from the Winelands is winless in its last five matches, they have lost four of those games and failed to score in three matches.

Steve Barker’s team also has disciplinary issues, having collected three red cards in the last four games but Riveiro still doesn’t expect to see complacency from his players.

"For us, we coming from two defeats so if somebody is relaxed, he's in the wrong place. It doesn't matter who's coming on Sunday, it's about us more than ever.

We need to turn the situation, we need to show like I said what we did in the second half [against Mamelodi Sundowns], that personality to say things are looking difficult but here we are, Sunday is gonna be the same. 

Things are looking difficult but here we are. We are gonna offer a good fight for sure."