Ex-Super Eagles shot-stopper Peter Rufai is backing South Africa-based Daniel Akpeyi following his recent performances with the national team.
Akpeyi was initially not considered for selection by Gernot Rohr for Nigeria’s friendly games against Ukraine and Brazil back in September and October respectively.
To all fellow Kaizer Chiefs fans who trolled, mocked and called Daniel Akpeyi all sorts of names, I'm expecting your hearty apologies under this tweet as of now. Swallow your pride and applaud the man… #Amakhosi4Life #KaizerChiefs #Khosi4Life 💛&✌ pic.twitter.com/a8m471UBU1
— Kokwele M. Phillix 🇿🇦 (@Matome_Kay) November 2, 2019
However, after Francis Uzoho suffered an injury during Brazil friendly, the Kazier Chiefs shot-stopper was recalled ahead of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers against Lesotho and Benin Republic.
The 33-year-old Akpeyi was in action for Nigeria’s Super Eagles in their 2-1 win over Benin in Uyo last Wednesday and in the 4-2 away win against Lesotho in Maseru on Sunday.
Rufai, who led the country to the 1994 and 1998 World Cups, is now drumming support for the much-criticized shot-stopper to continue his improvement with the national team.
“In football, you can never say you have overgrown challenges that confront people in your position,” Rufai was quoted as saying to brila.net.
“Goalkeepers cannot overgrow their challenges, Akpeyi is still a good goalkeeper and he is doing well at the moment, training day in and out to show his qualities.
“As long as he is playing, he will keep growing and keep showing his qualities.”