Bafana Bafana

Khune backing new boys

2011-03-23 12:08
Itumeleng Khune (Gallo)
Johannesburg - Bafana Bafana goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune is not concerned by the prospect of being the last line of a new defence against Egypt.

The Kaizer Chiefs stopper has admitted that Tsepo Masilela is a big loss at left back after he was ruled out of Saturday's 2012 AFCON qualifier with an injury.

Rueben Cloete appears to have recovered from a groin strain and is set to start on that flank, with Prince Hlela as his understudy.

However, both players are uncapped at senior level for South Africa, but Khune has faith in their abilities.

"We all have a role to play for the national team and we know it is a big loss that we can't call on Tsepo, because he is injured. But in my opinion we have very good players to cover in that position and I'm not worried," said 'Itu'.

"I mean we have Hlela and Cloete and both players have been doing well for their respective clubs. All they need to do when given a chance is to listen to me and the coach and nothing will go wrong.

"I'm confident I have the guys who can do the job for me as the last line of defence."

The highly-rated Amakhosi gloveman added: "I will have to communicate and guide them well for the entire 90 minutes."

South Africa are yet to concede a goal in the qualifiers after keeping clean sheets against Niger at home and Sierra Leone away.

The 23-year-old is determined to continue that trend at Ellis Park.

"I have been conceding goals at Chiefs and I hear people talk about it and I don't feel good when I have to pick (up) the ball in the net," he said.

"But this will be a different ball game because I will be wearing the national team jersey and we haven't conceded.

"We conceded against the USA, but before that we hadn't conceded in four games and we didn't concede against Kenya, so the aim is always not to concede and half the battle is won," Khune concluded.

Read more on:    itumeleng khune  |  bafana

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