Middendorp impressed at new Kaizer Chiefs goalkeeper Akpeyi
Kaizer Chiefs coach Ernst Middendorp was pleased at how new goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi handled the pressure of being thrown in the deep end for Saturday’s debut in the Soweto derby against Orlando Pirates.
Akpeyi was the less busy on the afternoon in the 1-1 Absa Premiership draw of the two goalkeepers at FNB Stadium‚ with Wayne Sandilands called into action more often as Chiefs shaded control of the derby.
But when Chiefs’ new Nigeria international‚ signed due to the injury to Bafana Bafana first choice Itumeleng Khune‚ was called on‚ he handled those situations well.
“The management of Kaizer Chiefs had a very clear profile not to bring somebody in who would be in competition for second or third [in line as goalkeeper]‚” Middendorp said.
“We have enough in this department. There was a very clear understanding‚ now‚ looking into it‚ that at the beginning of next season we would have really two top No 1 goalkeepers.
“And if somebody is able – like Daniel‚ as we saw [on Saturday]‚ and in this short period of four or five days with the team‚ and with such an expectation in front of massive crowd like the derby – to show the calmness‚ the clear structure‚ in addition not even knowing everyone’s name...
“He handled it very well. We have definitely got confirmation that Kaizer Chiefs‚ on the management side‚ have made the right decision to bring him.”
Akpeyi was signed from Chippa United on transfer deadline day on January 31.
He was brought in to bolster a goalkeeping department where Virgil Vries had struggled with costly errors deputising for Khune.