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Football | Absa Premiership

Benni McCarthy © Backpagepix

CT City sign ex-Inter Milan striker

After announcing the shock signing of former Inter Milan striker Victor Obinna, Cape Town City manager Benni McCarthy has explained how the deal came to fruition.

At the age of 30, having spent over a decade in Europe and amassing 48 caps for the senior Nigeria national team - a move to the South African Premiership comes as a major surprise.

However, McCarthy revealed that he's been in contact with the skilful forward since their time together at West Ham United in the 2010/11 season in the English Premier League.

"Obinna, he's a great friend of mine," he told reporters after the Kaizer Chiefs game on Wednesday evening."I've known Victor from his days in the Nigerian national team when he used to be a strike partner for Obafemi Martins.

"Back then, obviously when he signed with Inter as an African player everyone knows about it. It was round about that time I was in England, Spain, Portugal. It is big news for African players when they get such an opportunity.

"I came across him at West Ham where we played together. He was a bit youngish, I took him under my wing as I was on the way out. We became friends and always just kept in touch all these years.

"I learnt he was free and doesn't have a club. of course, when you are in Europe why would you come to South Africa? So I had to persuade him a little bit to get back into football and that he can always go back to Europe.

"And to my shock and surprise, he said, 'yeah, why not?' What has he got to lose? So he came down and that's it because we were teammates at West Ham and with what he's seen and read that the team plays nice football," McCarthy added.

"He's a very humble guy and hopefully he can teach the guys some stuff or learn from them as he's been out of African football for many years. This is his way to get back into top flight football, and why not with Cape Town City?"


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