Benni linked to Ajax return

While he battles on a largely unimpressive in-and-out-basis in the Blackburn Rovers squad, one-time South African scoring ace Benni McCarthy was on Tuesday linked to Ajax Amsterdam — with some forlorn pleas that Bafana Bafana should recall him as well.

Ironically, the 31-year-old McCarthy enjoyed a fair measure of success with both these footballing entities during his halcyon years — but his performances during the new English Premier League season has provided scant evidence as to why he should be recalled by either Bafana or Ajax.

McCarthy is presently out of the Blackburn line-up with a reported ankle injury and this should be sufficient for Bafana coach Joel Santana to ignore pleas from former South African striker Phil Masinga and others to restore him to international duty for the coming games against Germany and the Republic of Ireland.

Santana initially dropped McCarthy from the recent Confederations Cup after he had baulked from playing in the immediate previous matches for Bafana, with South Africa’s top scorer’s form, fitness and fortitude all wavering in the process.

Despite his decline, England’s Daily Mirror this week carried a report that Ajax were keen to re-sign McCarthy, as well as Danny Koevermans, in a desperate bid to solve their ongoing scoring problems.

It was also suggested that this was why McCarthy was currently on the sidelines at Blackburn.

But with the transfer window closing in less than a week, there is not much time for Ajax to conclude a deal — supposing McCarthy actually wants to return to Holland. — Sapa

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