Super Eagles goalkeeper, Daniel Akpeyi was born on August 3, 1986, in Nnewi, Anambra State, southeastern Nigeria.
Over the course of his career, Akpeyi has flirted with the starting goalkeeping position of the Super Eagles but has never stamped his authority.
Akpeyi started his youth career in the Nigerian lower league on the books on Gabros International before making a step up to the first team where he featured from 2005 till 2007 before a move to Nigeria Premier League side, Nasarrawa United where he lasted another three years. He moved to Heartland in 2010 where he became a fan’s favorite and won consecutive federation cup titles in 2011 and 2012 before departing for Warri Wolves in 2014. He will spend just one more season in the Nigeria professional football scene as he departed for the South African Premier Soccer League outfit, Chippa United United in 2015 where he was consistently used and became the starting goalkeeper over the course of his five-year stay at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium. Akpeyi finally moved to Kaizer Chiefs in the 2019 winter transfer window as he continued his career in South Africa.
Akpeyi did not go through the Nigerian youth set up at U-17 level and his first breakthrough on the international scene came when he was included in Samson Siasia’s U-20 team to 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship in the Netherlands alongside Mikel Obi and Chinedu Obasi. Although he made no appearance at the competition he was part of the Flying Eagles that finished runners up to a Lionel Messi inspired Argentina team.
After 2005, Akpeyi’s next exposure on the international scene came when Stephen Keshi named him amongst the home-based Super Eagles goalkeepers selected to the 2014 African Nations Championship and played a part as they won a bronze medal at the competition in South Africa.
After his exploits with the Super Eagles B team, Akpeyi’s next step to an international tournament came when Siasia again invited him to be part of the U-23 team to the football event at the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Brazil where he contributed to a bronze medal finish. With the Super Eagles first team, Akpeyi has been invited on several occasions but only featured nine times. His first outing came under Stephen Keshi in a 1-1 draw against the Bafana Bafana of South Africa. Since then most of Akpeyi’s appearance with the national team have come in international friendly games.
He has participated in two African Cup of Nations and one World Cup qualification encounter and was part of Gernot Rohr’s team to the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, where he was on the bench for all three group games as a possible replacement for Francis Uzoho.
Over the course of Akpeyi’s career, he has played consistently and at the highest level of African football, but has never tied down the number one shirt at National team level, prominently as a substitute to Vincent Enyeama, Austin Ejide, Carl Ikeme and Francis Uzoho but is expected to provide good competition at the 2019 AFCON in Egypt.