Legendary goalkeeper John Tlale has backed Itumeleng Khune to reclaim the number one jersey at Kaizer Chiefs.
Khune has fallen down the pecking order at Chiefs since making a number of high-profile errors in the last couple of years exacerbated by a lengthy injury that kept him out of the game for almost a year.
‘Itu’ was handed rare gametime in the Warriors’ 2-1 win over AmaButho in the DStv Compact Cup on Saturday and impressed with a commanding performance between the sticks.
And Tlale, who made 173 appearances for Mamelodi Sundowns and eight appearances for Bafana Bafana in a career spanning between 1992 and 2003, believes Khune’s performance is a much-needed confidence booster for the veteran shot-stopper.
“It’s difficult because obviously Khune has not played at all [for Chiefs in the league this term] but obviously Stuart [Baxter] Dillon [Sheppard] & Arthur Zwane were watching this game and he didn’t let them down,” Kerr said after the Warriors' win over Amabutho #DSTVCompactCup pic.twitter.com/2IjszS3m8l— Austin Ditlhobolo (@A_B_Ditlhobolo) January 24, 2022
“I think he will bounce back,” Tlale told KickOff.
“I think he will learn from his mistakes and at the moment he’s trying to recover.
“He’s trying to get back to his best at Kaizer Chiefs.
“Even though he will be under tremendous pressure in the Compact Cup, he will be able to come back.
“I think he’s one of the best even today in Mzansi. Depending on his lifestyle of course, but goalkeepers can play until they are 40. I played until I was 38 but when I retired I was still okay.
“So he will bounce back, they just need to give him enough chances, he’s one brave player that I know. I believe in him.
“To be honest his form has dropped, he is not the same Khune that we know when he was playing at Kaizer Chiefs previously. But he hasn’t become a bad player overnight.”