Khune’s return presents challenge for Baxter

2015-02-04 14:14

As Kaizer Chiefs captain Itumeleng Khune returns to full fitness, coach Stuart Baxter says he has some tough decisions to make in the goalkeeping department.

“There is no doubt that when Itu is 100% fit, he is one of the best goalkeepers on the continent,” Baxter said in Johannesburg today.

However, he said back-up goalkeepers Brilliant Khuzwayo and Reeyad Pieterse had deputised with aplomb during Khune’s long injury lay-off.

In the five months Khune was out of action, Chiefs enjoyed an impressive unbeaten streak with Khuzwayo the preferred man between the posts.

Baxter said he would make a decision which he believed would be fair to all those involved.

“Both Brilliant and Reeyad have been tremendous during Itu’s absence. We still have to manage how we do things the right way.

“Itu’s fitness level will have to be considered as well as the correct timing to throw him back in. I have to do what is fair and what is right for the team.”

Amakhosi remained unbeaten in the league with 14 wins and four draws.

Last year, they also set a new domestic record of 15 consecutive wins across all competitions – a run which yielded the MTN8 title.

The second half of the season would provide a tougher challenge for the club, also competing in the Caf Champions League as well as the Nedbank Cup.

The log leaders return to action with a league encounter against Bloemfontein Celtic at the Free State Stadium on February 11.

They open their continental account with a clash against Botswana’s Township Rollers on February 14 at the FNB Stadium.

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