Kaizer Chiefs centre back Daniel Cardoso has revealed who converted him into a defender.
The 31-year-old player has established himself as one of the best defenders in the country since last season.
Cardoso was included in the Bafana Bafana squad which participated in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) finals in Egypt.
The Johannesburg-born player has disclosed he was a striker until he joined Bidvest Wits' academy where he worked with former Orlando Pirates coach Eric Tinkler.
“Look, I wish I could still be playing striker, there’s no doubt about it," said Cardoso during a joint initiative with Toyota South Africa.
"But it’s one of those things. They converted me when I went to Wits [academy]."
Cardoso also played for Jomo Cosmos academy as a youngster and he worked with Roy Matthews and Jomo Sono.
Furthermore, the tough-tackling player had a stint with Pirates' former reserve team, Yebo Yes United where he worked with Augusto Palacios.
However, Cardoso is grateful to current Maritzburg United coach Tinkler, who helped transform him into a centre back.
“Coach Eric Tinkler put me at centre-back and thought I would do well there, and I’ve excelled from there," he added.
“It’s a position I had to adapt to and I’m loving the position now, so I’m thankful and I’m glad that I’m making everybody proud.”
Cardoso was well-travelled as a youngster having also turned out for Robertsham Callies and SuperSport United academy.
The no-nonsense defender got his big break at Free State Stars with coach Steve Komphela giving him his breakthrough as a professional footballer.
Cardoso made his PSL debut during the 2012/13 season when he started for Stars in their 2-0 win over Bidvest Wits in August 2012.
The experienced player spent three seasons with Ea Lla Koto before securing a big move to Chiefs in 2016 where he is now a key player.
Cardoso is also a goalscoring defender having netted five goals across all competitions this season which has been suspended since March due to the coronavirus pandemic.
He has been an ever-present player for the Soweto giants in the league having started all of their 22 games this term.