Former Bafana Bafana defender Bongani Khumalo has thrown his weight behind calls for Super Eagles stand-in skipper William Troost-Ekong to relinquish penalty duties to strikers like Victor Osimhen and Ademola Lookman.
Troost-Ekong stepped up to convert the game-winning penalty for Nigeria, despite the presence of natural penalty-takers like Osimhen and Lookman.
Khumalo, who represented South Africa at the 2013 AFCON, admitted initial discomfort seeing a defender taking such a crucial penalty. He stated, “Seeing a center-back like Troost-Ekong take the penalty when you have world-class strikers like Osimhen and Lookman available left me feeling a bit uneasy.”
However, Khumalo ultimately applauded Ekong’s courage and leadership in taking the crucial spot-kick, acknowledging it as “a fantastic decision” that secured the win for Nigeria.
Also read: AFCON: Oliseh hails Ola Aina’s performance in Ivory Coast win
“When you look at it in hindsight, Troost-Ekong taking the penalty was brilliant,” Khumalo conceded, acknowledging the pressure of the situation.
Nigeria’s victory catapults them to second place on the table, one point behind surprise leaders Equatorial Guinea, who thrashed Guinea-Bissau 4-2 thanks to a captain’s hat-trick from striker Emilio Nsue.