By Ameenu Shardow, follow on Twitter @alooameenu
Ghana goalkeeper Fatau Dauda is set to get more games at Orlando Pirates after interim coach Eric Tinkler admitted regular Senzo Meyiwa has lost his shine.
The first choice Black Stars shot-stopper made his long-awaited competitive debut for the Bucs in their 1-0 defeat to Mamelodi Sundowns on Saturday.
Dauda came in moments after Meyiwa has failed to deal with a thunderous strike by Hlompho Kekana that handed Sundowns the lead – which eventually proved to be the match winner.
The South African goalkeeper complained of an unspecified injury and was booed by the fans as he limped off the pitch.
Several fans of the Buccaneers have blamed Meyiwa’s loss of form for their recent slump the South African top flight and wondered why the coaches at Pirates have failed to use the Ghana goalkeeper.
Interim coach Eric Tinkler in admitting to the 26-year-old’s loss of form says the criticisms on Meyiwa are unfair as the club will do all it can to help him get back to his best.
"You guys are a little bit harsh. You know, look at what this boy has done for this club during the Champions League," Tinkler points out.
"I still think he is one of the best goalkeepers in the country.
“I think he's going through a bit of a difficult time at the moment and we will try to support him as much as we can, and I'm sure we as the club will make a decision on how we handle the situation with Senzo.
"It will be an internal matter and it won't go out to the media.
“We still believe in Senzo... I'm obviously not happy with what happened [against Sundowns] and that's why I made the sub of Dauda coming in.
“We will assess the situation over the next couple of days to see what we do when we go to Free State Stars."
Tinkler’s comments could open a window of opportunity for Fatau Dauda who is in desperate need of regular first team action especially as the 2014 World Cup approaches.
The injury and loss of form of Meyiwa would therefore leave the ex AshantiGold player in a good position to be constantly picked for games.
Dauda could even claim the no.1 spot for himself of he manages to excel whenever he is given the opportunity.
This opportunity could come as early as Wednesday when Orlando Pirates travel to face Free State Stars in the Absa Premier League.