Middendorp refutes keeper crisis talk

Chiefs defeated the Team of Choice 1-0 in their recent Absa Premiership encounter at the FNB Stadium, with Bruce Bvuma taking the position between the sticks ahead of Daniel Akpeyi.

Akpeyi, having recently joined from Chippa United, had already made a couple of blunders that led to criticism and further doubts over his ability to replace the injured Itumeleng Khune.

READ: Baxter explains Bvuma's Bafana selection

While Bvuma had not gotten a run in the league since Middendorp’s arrival, it was thought that perhaps his turn on Saturday came as a result of the lack of trust in the Nigerian.

However, the German offered a very reasonable explanation as to why Bvuma was brought in ahead of Akpeyi, before also praising the 23-year-old’s performance.

“I can take a dictionary [to see] what is a crisis, and I think it’s simple-easy, without making jokes about it,” said Middendorp.

“We have a very, very important game on March 31 and we’ve done everything – I’ve travelled to watch Cape Town City and I smile already about having so much fun doing so.

“I watched them in Pretoria against Sundowns too and, if there is any chance, I will go [to watch them] again. We have to be well prepared to win this game.

“Bruce is the goalkeeper and Daniel can’t play because of being cup-tied, so now of course we have to manage this. We can’t sit until the last week and give him a training session or a second training session, that is not how it works in football.

“The change had nothing to do with [poor performance], I’m very happy with Daniel and his performance in the last game. He’s a national team goalkeeper and has been invited to the squad for Nigeria’s match [against Seychelles] and he will be at the AFCON].

“In the moment, to talk about crisis, I think it’s not adequate. It’s just to give Bruce [some game time]. There were a few small incidents but otherwise he had a fantastic performance.”