Kaizer Chiefs goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi has admitted it will not be easy to push Itumeleng Khune down the pecking order but hopes he will not just sit on the bench.
This comes as the Bafana Bafana keeper is expected to make his return for the Soweto giants this weekend as they host SuperSport United in their third Premier Soccer League (PSL) match.
Following Khune’s injury, Nigerian keeper Akpeyi has served together with Bruce Bvuma, but he is aware ‘Itu’s’ return could minimize his chances to don the number one shirt.
“I am not taking anything away from Khune, he has been a hero for the team. I am not here to compete with him. I am only hoping that I will get as much game time as I wish and not be parked forever on the bench,” Akpeyi told reporters.
“It has been a bit of mixed feelings but I am still standing strong and facing every challenge and I think it is slowly coming out better for me and I am getting to the best of it,” he added.
“But sometimes you have the feeling that you won’t have game time and things won’t happen the way you want. You need to understand the way you find yourself and you need to adjust and keep working,” he added.
In addition, the former Chippa United gloveman explained his fears of losing his number one spot as the Super Eagles number one, adding he hopes the coaches will understand the dynamics at his club even if he is not playing regular football.
“Sometimes this game can be tricky but when you have someone who understands the dynamics of this game, who understands how things run,” continued the lanky keeper.
“I am in a team where I will not be playing 100% of games. That should be understood because there is no way that I can push Khune aside no matter if he is on form or not, he has this background that it would be difficult for you to push him out, I am just being honest about it," noted the 33-year-old.
“But for whoever is the head [coach of Nigeria] as long as he understands the dynamics and how things work, as long as I am injury-free and doing my best here and the report gets to them it will be up to them to decide if they want to give me a chance and still believe I can make it work with the national team,” he concluded.
With coach Ernst Middendorp’s men having won two of their opening league matches, they face Amatsantsantsa A Pitori who are fresh from two consecutive wins in all competitions.