Keet gets last game for Wits‚ and last chance to impress Baxter

07 May 2019 - 14:29
By Mark Gleeson
International goalkeeper Darren Keet. File photo
Image: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix International goalkeeper Darren Keet. File photo

Darren Keet is supposed to be playing his last game for Bidvest Wits on Saturday as his contract comes to an end but the future of the international goalkeeper remains cloudy.

At the same time‚ the 29-year-old keeper will need to put in a strong showing against Lamontville Golden Arrows in Durban on Saturday to impress Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter if he is to be the country’s first choice at the Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt next month.

The last months have been something of a crossroads for Keet‚ who was the star performer in goal for the national team in their last game against Libya with key saves to help the country qualify.

He was given the nod for that decisive qualifier in March ahead of Ronwen Williams after injury ruled out Itumeleng Khune.

Khune will not be going to the Cup of Nations either‚ which means Keet is in pole position to play.

But Wits coach Gavin Hunt dropped him for the last five games of the league season because of his intention to leave the club‚ preferring instead to give Ricardo Goss the chance to play as he will likely be the number one for the coming season.

During the time Keet was warming the bench‚ Bafana rival Williams continued to keep goal for SuperSport United.

Goss got sent off against Baroka FC last Saturday‚ allowing Keet a final swansong in Wits’ colours when they finish the seaon away in Durban. Wits still have an outside chance of winning the title.

Keet‚ who spent five seasons in Belgium at KV Kortrijk between 2011 and 2016‚ has made no secret of his hopes to move overseas‚ notably to the USA where he has family.

But previous efforts to get a look in at a Major League Soccer club have not produced any positive dividends.

Two months ago‚ Keet was on the radar of Azerbaijan club FK Qarabag‚ who Dino Ndlovu previously played for in the Uefa Champions League.

There was also a suggestion that if no overseas move came for Keet‚ that Kaizer Chiefs might offer him a deal‚ as there would be no transfer fee at the end of his contract.

But it has also emerged that Keet had talks with Wits management this week‚ offering the possibility he stays after a change of heart.