Kaizer Chiefs goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi has backed coach Ernst Middendorp to field players who are in form, defying any practice of prejudice or favour. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
Kaizer Chiefs goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi has backed coach Ernst Middendorp to field players who are in form, defying any practice of prejudice or favour.

Since joining Chiefs earlier this year, there are few Amakhosi fans who have backed Akpeyi to completely dethrone captain Itumeleng Khune as the club’s first-choice goalkeeper.

However, the Nigerian-born shot-stopper took that criticism on the chin and has since dished out impressive exploits since being entrusted as first choice this season as Khune continues to battle with injuries.

Akpeyi’s resurgence has been a marvel to watch, so much so that his heroics between the sticks have inspired Chiefs to the top of the PSL standings, while his absence during the team’s Telkom Knockout semi-final clash last weekend was notable as they were booted out of the competition Maritzburg United. Nonetheless, Akpeyi’s impressive exploits were noted by the PSL, as he scooped the award of being the Best Player of the Month for September/October.

And what made the recognition even sweeter is that his coach, Middendorp, sat alongside him, yesterday during the award presentation at the PSL Offices, after he was voted as the Best Coach for the last two months.

“There’s a healthy competition, so it’s not about Khune being the No 1 or something. He has been there for a long time and I am sure that when he’s fully recovered, and when the coach gives him a chance to play then I have to wait for my time. The good thing is we’ve been supporting each other at the end of the day,” Akpeyi said.

The 33-year-old keeper, who started his career in South Africa’s top flight at Chippa United in 2015, admitted that his biggest wish is to win some silverware with Chiefs sooner rather than later.

@mihlalibaleka 


The Star