Kaizer Chiefs of South Africa goalkeeper, Daniel Akpeyi is bound to miss a number of matches with the squad in the Premier Soccer League (PSL), as Amakhosi midfielder, George Maluleka says rotation is necessary in the shot-stopper’s position.
With Akpeyi jostling for a single spot along with three other keepers at the Johannesburg-based club, while their first choice is recovering from injury, Maluleka reckons that they all deserve equal opportunities.
However, while critics question the sense behind Chiefs’ decision to buy Akpeyi from the PSL rivals, Chippa United, Maluleka is of a view that it was necessary as cover for their injured top keeper, Itumeleng Khune.
Maluleka, though, refused to admit crisis at The Glamour Boys, since Khune was ruled out for the remainder of the season due to a shoulder injury suffered in December.
However, the coach, Ernst Middendorp has now used three different goalkeepers in two months.
It began when reserve keeper, Virgil Vries, who joined the club at the start of the season, committed numerous costly errors in January and the club hurriedly bought Akpeyi from Chippa on transfer deadline day.
Dramatically, Akpeyi cannot feature for Amakhosi in the NedBank Cup, since he already played for Chippa United in same competition, so the former reserve keeper, Bruce Bvuma has stepped in for that contest.
That took Chiefs’ usage to four different goalkeepers in one season, which observers say is a historic feat for Amakhosi.
Maluleka, though, insists there is no crisis of choice, saying the only reason behind the rotation of shot-stoppers is down to the depth of abilities held by all the contenders.
‘Mido,’ who has also donned the club’s captain’s armband on numerous occasions, added: “A lot of people say Khune’s injury was a crisis, which I don’t think it was.
“We have four quality goalkeepers here and maybe it also boils down to who deserves the chance, because they all do very well, train the same and they’re all quality.
“Lee Baxter would know in terms of why use four goalkeepers in a single season. But they all deserve to play, and I think that’s why there’s a spell of rotation between them.”