Igesund says Benni is in with a shout
BENNI McCarthy stands as much chance as any other striker in the Absa Premiership of being selected for Bafana Bafana if he is performing — no more, no less, says Bafana Bafana coach Gordon Igesund.
McCarthy this week revealed he is revved up to make a bid to return to the national team.
McCarthy, 34, was speaking after having been watched by Igesund in a pre-season friendly for Orlando Pirates against Lamontville Golden Arrows, where the striker scored two goals. Afterwards, the national coach spoke to McCarthy and told the striker the national team will be selected on merit, and any player on form will be considered regardless of age.
Yesterday Igesund confirmed his conversation with McCarthy.
“Every single player who is playing in our Premier League now, if he is performing and doing a good job, or scoring goals, regardless if his name is Benni McCarthy, or Joe Soap or Mabhuti Khenyeza — will be considered,” Igesund said.
“So it’s not about Benni McCarthy, or one particular player — it’s a pool of players we have in our country who are all playing at a high level.
“As for Benni, I’ve just read articles that he’s very motivated, so I think that’s very good to hear. I’m hoping that all players in our league are motivated and know that if they perform, if they score goals, if they do their job, they will be selected on merit.”
Igesund said McCarthy will not be selected on name: “If any striker is playing well and scoring goals on a regular basis, then their feats on the field for their clubs won’t go unnoticed.
“He certainly won’t be selected because his name is Benni McCarthy. He has to be selected because he’s scoring goals on a regular basis, playing well at a high level, and doing a good job.”