I want to play until I’m 40‚ says Kaizer Chiefs goalie Itumeleng Khune
You'd think that amassing 300 professional games under your belt is a milestone that would satisfy most Premier Soccer League (PSL) players on any given day‚ but not for Kaizer Chiefs number one goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune.
Khune achieved this feat last weekend but after saying on Thursday that it was “a great feeling” to achieve the 300-game milestone‚ he added that his job was far from over as he was planning to double that number in the coming years.
“There’s Doctor Khumalo on 397‚ Brian Baloyi‚ Thabo Mooki and Siphiwe Tshabalala ahead of me. Those are great legends‚" he said.
“I’m really happy to be among them on the 300 mark.
“I made a joke to my teammates and coach when they congratulated me (on Tuesday).
"I said to them I think I’m left with nine more seasons.
“I’m 31 this year and I want to play until I’m 40.
"Jokingly I said 300 matches to date‚ 700 to go.
"They said 'no ways‚ let’s do maths. How many season have you been with Chiefs’‚ I said '11'‚ they said 'okay you played 300'.
“So in the next nine years they said I won’t play 700. They were right.
"But as I said‚ if it was not for the injuries I could have played 400 or 500 already.”
Khune dismissed suggestions that realistically he may afford to play 200 more games simply because he is a goalkeeper.
“No‚ no‚ no… well over 200. Maybe 600 (in total)‚” he said.
“But it will take a lot of discipline for me.
"It will take me to look after my body because it’s my investment.
“If I continue working hard‚ I will reach that milestone (600).”
Khune will continue chasing his dream in terms of games he’s played this weekend when Chiefs host AmaZulu in a league match at FNB Stadium on Saturday.
His form this season has placed him among the players who could be nominated for PSL Player of the Season despite his team's unconvincing displays in front of goals.
That Chiefs have only conceded 15 goals in 23 league matches this season is mainly due to Khune’s form after he kept 12 clean sheets in 21 league matches this season.
Khune’s 300 games are made up of 236 league games‚ 59 cup games and five matches in the CAF Champions League.