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Akpeyi ‘kills’ the xenos

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Akpeyi proved an outstanding shot-stopper on the day and a solid purchase to boot by Bobby Motaung

You’ve got to hand it to the Kaizer Chiefs goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi who collected the Absa ‘Man of the Match’ award for his excellent performance between the sticks during the 165th Soweto derby against the mighty Buccaneers on Saturday.

So good was Akpeyi between the sticks that methinks it will be a long while before the faithful Khosifieds will see their old and trusted golden boy Itumeleng Khune between Amakhosi poles. Akpeyi proved an outstanding shot-stopper on the day and a solid purchase to boot by Bobby Motaung. On Saturday he was without a doubt at his best. Long may he stay on top form!

Which brings us to the reaction of the many Khosi fans who took to social media regarding the exploits of Akpeyi who is a passport-carrying Nigerian import. One meme suggested that Akpeyi’s performance during the derby had in one fell swoop solved Mzansi’s notorious resort to xenophobia.

I do not know a thing about the merits of that suggestion. But I sure hope to the heavens that it does achieve that sort of lofty thing.

But who is kidding who?

You and I know for certain that Akpeyi is not seen nor regarded in that light. On any given day he simply is a Khosi player. His being a foreign national does not even come into the game.

As for myself I am more worried about Itu possibly not getting enough game time because of the sheer brilliance of Daniel. It must be said, though, that it is a good thing that Chiefs have a surplus of first-class goalkeepers.

From a national interest point of view, we need Itu to get game time. He is still our national goalpost minder. For that reason, he should get preference over Akpeyi. Pardon me if that sounds as though I am prone to xenophobia. The national interest dictates that I stick with our homeboy, even though the Motaungs pick up the tab.

About Akpeyi and Khune this is my ten bob’s worth. You can imagine what the strikers of the opposing teams are going to have to resort to in order to get past them. One already has the feeling that there is a sense of anxiety among the strikers. One of the Orlando Pirates players, who was interviewed afterwards, expressed his team’s frustration at not being able to beat the Kaizer Chiefs shot-stopper.

Just as an aside, where exactly has Akpeyi been? I ask this prompted by his accent. It was my first time hearing the goalkeeper speak on the telly. To moi he sounded like an American evangelist. I could be wrong but Akpeyi sounds unlike what we have become used to as the regular Nigerian voice.

Unlike what we have become used to about the accents of his countrymen Akpeyi speaks through the nasals whereas most of his compatriots speak through the mouth, know what I mean?

While on the subject of the derby. Did you check the seating around the stadium? I for one am glad I did the usual in front of the telly.

There just wasn’t enough space even for an ant to crawl. Besides, I probably would have sat in the cheap seats very high up towards the roof. From that distance, the players on the pitch look like termites.

Pirates as the derby hosts must have made a handsome profit from just the gate.

Just looking at the seating grossly contradicted the fact that SA’s minister of finance said a week ago that some of us might have to forego a salary increase, if not the whole job.

At around R40 an open seat or R100 for a suite side seat Pirates walked away with a bundle. Salang.