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South African goalkeepers and others should work harder to reclaim PSL places - Kapini

18:23 WAT 20/03/2020
Itumeleng Khune Daniel Akpeyi and Brylon Petersen of Kaizer Chiefs February 2020
The Lions of the North net-minder has challenged South African keepers to get out of their comfort zone

With the debate currently going on that South African goalkeepers are better than their foreign counterparts, Highlands Park netminder Tapuwa Kapini has urged the locals to work harder to prove that.

The former Zimbabwe national team stopper believes the fact that foreign shot-stoppers are the first-choice keepers in the Premier Soccer League (PSL) means they are doing something good.

Kapini was responding to Bafana Bafana mentor Molefi Ntseki's concern with the likes of Kaizer Chiefs’ Itumeleng Khune playing second-fiddle to Daniel Akpeyi of Nigeria, as well as Ghana’s Richard Ofori at Maritzburg United.

“The national team coach should be glad that almost all foreign keepers are number ones in their respective countries,” Kapini told the media as quoted by FarPost.

"[Denis] Onyango plays for Uganda, [Richard] Ofori plays for Ghana, [Elvis] Chipezeze is Zimbabwean number one. No foreign keepers who come to South Africa and get the number one position.

“They all start on the bench. Akpeyi [Daniel] started on the bench at Chiefs but worked hard to claim the position.”

Meanwhile, the former AmaZulu skipper has also urged the locals to fight harder for a starting berth at their clubs, saying being local doesn’t guarantee them a spot between the posts.

“South African goalkeepers should work hard to reclaim places in the local teams. Just because you are a local keeper doesn’t guarantee you a place, you need to work for it,” he added.

“They must work closely with foreign keepers in their teams and learn from them. Where we came from, we worked hard. Our only goal when we come to South Africa is to win that jersey and keep it.

“Some foreign keepers like Chipezeze and Ofori have been made captains in their teams which makes it even more difficult for local keepers. They must match the work ethic of foreign keepers.”

Meanwhile, Kapini was the preferred choice when they lost 1-0 to Mamelodi Sundowns in the Nedbank Cup a week ago but 'ODG' has been using Marlon Heugh and Thela Ngobeni in the league.