PIETERMARITZBURG – In-form Maritzburg United midfield maestro, Keagan Buchanan, is over his injury problems and is back to his best for the Team of Choice in the middle of the park.
Buchanan is showing why Kaizer Chiefs captured his signature few years ago, with his displays of fluid movements off the ball, deft touches and supreme skills.
The 29-year-old is now born again. Some in the football fraternity are even suggesting that it is not long before he breaks into the Bafana Bafana set-up but Buchanan doesn’t want to think that far ahead.
“Every player obviously wants to play for the national team but for me my first goal is to stay on the field. I’m happy that I’m able to train and play. I’m happy that I’m able to contribute.
"With regards to Bafana, I won’t say it is on my mind. It is all up to the coach to make the call. I obviously do aspire to play for the national team. Only the coach (Molefi Ntseki) can know if I can contribute to the team. I want to stay consistent and if you are consistent, you will get rewarded. I’m just focusing on the team. Anything else that comes my way will be the cherry on the top. I know coach Molefi, I’ve worked with him at Celtic," Buchanan answered when quizzed about his desire to wear the national colours.
Bafana have an affair with Sao Tome and Principe next month in back to back Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers.
The mercurial Buchanan couldn’t make the grade in his stint with the Glamour Boys but he has moved on from that.
“The way the team is playing, my strengths come out more in this set-up with coach Eric Tinkler. Maybe at the time (at Chiefs) my style wasn’t suitable to coach Steve Komphela for what he wanted. You need to respect that. I got around 52 tweets, why didn’t you do this at Chiefs and obviously I don’t respond. Situations are different and coaches are different," he added.
Buchanan has featured in 18 league matches for the Team of Choice across all the competitions.
“Coach Eric has taken my game to another level. Coming from injuries is never easy. Sometimes it takes a season or two for (injured) players to be back to their best. I prepared myself mentally before I came back from my knee injury. Working off the ball and the defensive side of the game is something that I needed to do. I’m not at my full best. I want to have more goals and more assists but I won’t rush. I feel that would come. I am getting back to my best. I feel this is my best season. The most important thing for me now, is to finish the season. I want to stay injury free, that’s my goal," Buchanan elaborated.
Maritzburg will visit Bloemfontein Celtic tonight at 8.15pm in a Nedbank Cup last 16 encounter at Dr Molemela Stadium. All eyes will be on Buchanan to continue with his sparkling form.