Bartlett backs Akumu to shine at Chiefs


Kaizer Chiefs assistant coach Shaun Bartlett has backed Kenyan international Anthony Akumu Agay to have a big impact at Naturena but admits that he will take a bit of time to adjust to the Absa Premiership and settle into the club.

Akumu made his competitive debut for ‘The Glamour Boys’ in a last 32 Nedbank Cup encounter against struggling GladAfrica Championship side Royal Eagles in February at FNB Stadium. Chiefs walked away 1-0 victors.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Premier Soccer League (PSL) has been suspended indefinitely and Bartlett believes that Akumu [27] will now take a bit longer to get used to the Chiefs playing style.

“Akumu I think, for me Anthony Agay he will take a bit of time, you know coming in, in the middle of the season, coming in the games under pressure,” – Bartlett.

“It is always going to be difficult and I think the speed of the game as well sometimes you underestimate when you watch from maybe another country, you watch the PSL and say ‘I can go play there’ but once you start playing the matches you actually realise that it is not as easy as you thought it would be,” added Bartlett.

However, Bartlett is of the opinion that the former Zesco United midfielder, Akumu, who has a vast experience competing in African club competition as well as for the Kenyan national team can perform well at Chiefs.

“So, I think he will take a bit of time but we know we’ve got a player for the future that can do well for this club but as long as obviously he just applies whatever the technical team wants,” concluded Bartlett, who is a former ‘Amakhosi’ striker.

Since joining Chiefs on a three-and-half year deal in the January transfer window, Akumu has made four appearances in all competitions for the Soweto giants becoming the first Kenyan international to sign for the club.

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By Tokelo Martin Mokhesi 

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