When Bernard Parker spoke about the times he has had to endure in recent months he almost came to tears.
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Speaking after he was named Man-of-the-Match in Kaizer Chiefs’ 2-1 DStv Premiership win over SuperSport United at the weekend, Parker thanked his family for their support.
The 35-year-old forward has been attacked by some Amakhosi fans who feel he is a spent force and should be released by the club.
He was however a darling on Sunday night after scoring a brace that gave Amakhosi their second win in a row.
His coach Stuart Baxter also lamented those that have crucified Parker, saying their criticism is unfair.
“I told the players that they are privileged to have a senior professional like Parker who puts in a shift like he did tonight,” said Baxter after the match.
“He got us the goals that won us the three points and he is an absolute glowing example of the sort of player that we want to produce in South Africa.
“Without wanting to sound like I’m having a swipe at anybody, I just think we’re living and playing football in a time where it’s all about quick fixes and instant success.
“When you’ve worked as long and as hard as Bernard has, it’s very easy for people to say you’re over the hill and you’re not up to it. They’ve been saying that for a long time.
“They’ve said that about Shabba (Siphiwe Tshabalala) seven years before he retired, they’ve said it about Yeye (Reneilwe Letsholonyane), they’ve said that about a lot of players.
“So that’s the one thing, and we’ve got to live with that as players and coaches because that is the society and world we’re living in at the moment.”
Parker was pulled off with muscle strain with 20 minutes to go in their match against SuperSport but Baxter is hopeful it is not something serious.
He will get some time to get the injury fixed with Amakhosi’s next game set for 2 November against STellenbosch FC at FNB Stadium.