Itumeleng Khune: Kaizer Chiefs Coach Cavin Johnson Addresses Veteran's Crucial Role in Soweto Derby

Itumeleng Khune: Kaizer Chiefs Coach Cavin Johnson Addresses Veteran's Crucial Role in Soweto Derby

Robert Abong'o
March 8, 2024 at 7:29 AM
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Ahead of the highly anticipated Soweto Derby clash on Saturday, March 9, Kaizer Chiefs' interim coach, Cavin Johnson, has disclosed a significant role for Itumeleng Khune

The veteran goalkeeper has returned from a three-month suspension following allegations of arriving at training under the influence of alcohol.

The 36-year-old returned as the Glamour Boys gear up to face arch-rivals Orlando Pirates in the DStv Premiership at the FNB Stadium.

Kaizer Chiefs interim boss, Cavin Johnson and veteran goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune. Phill Magakoe and Steve Haag.
Cavin Johnson feels Itumeleng Khune's experience will be crucial in the Kaizer Chiefs dressing room. Phill Magakoe and Steve Haag.
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With 28 appearances in the derby, Khune brings invaluable experience handling the encounter's intense pressure.

Johnson has stressed the importance of the shot-stopper's contribution to Amakhosi's pursuit of victory, whether he starts or provides support from the sidelines. The coach underscored Khune's leadership qualities and extensive derby experience as pivotal assets for the team, both on and off the pitch.

“Itu has come back, and we welcomed him back, and for sure, he has a lot to do as far as holding the changing room together at this particular moment because of the derby,” Johnson said, as quoted on Far Post.

Following his suspension and subsequent loss of the captaincy in December last year, the goalkeeper rejoined the squad on Wednesday, March 6, after completing a corrective program, as reported by News24.

Initially, Chiefs had announced plans for Khune to move into a coaching and ambassadorial role, stressing his desire to broaden his technical expertise.

However, he expressed interest in continuing his playing career, aiming to stretch it until he reaches 40.

More recently, there has been speculation about the keeper's potential move to Sekhukhune United as his contract with Chiefs nears its end.

Khune to pursue media space

Earlier, Sports Brief reported that Khune contemplated transitioning from the pitch to the marketing sphere.

The Carling Knockout Cup All-Star match indicated how popular the 36-year-old remains.

His status as a role model could benefit the young players too.

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Robert Abong'o
Editor - Africa Team
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