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'Go and sell insurance' - Middendorp to Akpeyi's critics at Kaizer Chiefs

12:43 GMT 01/03/2020
Ernst Middendorp, Kaizer Chiefs, January 2019
The 61-year-old mentor admitted it was always the right decision to keep faith in the Nigeria international despite calls to drop him for Khune

Kaizer Chiefs coach Ernst Middendorp says it has never crossed his mind that sticking with Daniel Akpeyi as his No.1 would backfire and make things difficult for his team in the title race.  

The German mentor gave a classic response when asked if he now feels vindicated by continuing to play Akpeyi ahead of Itumeleng Khune. 

He said coaches make decisions based on performance and not according to what everyone else wants, saying a coach that isn't firm in their decisions should look for another career.   

"That's the job we are in as coaches - that if it backfires," a visibly pleased Middendorp told reporters. 

"But believe me, if you start with this and then you say, 'if I make this decision then it may backfire... oh no, take the beloved Itu Khune and ignore the performance level of a player you have in the training sessions', oh my! If you think it [a decision] will backfire then you are not [in the right industry] then you must go and sell insurance or something," said Middendorp.  

While Lebogang Manyama's solitary strike was the difference in Saturday's Soweto Derby against Orlando Pirates, it was Akpeyi's performance that stole the headlines. 

The Nigeria international pulled off a string of magnificent saves and eventually walked away with the Man of the Match award.