Late on Saturday night, Manchester United officially confirmed that new manager Erik ten Hag has added to his backroom team with the appointment of South African soccer legend Benni McCarthy as a first-team coach.
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McCarthy is set to work with the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial, Jadon Sancho and others when it comes to their “positioning and attacking plays”.
In no uncertain terms, this is a blockbuster move for McCarthy, who has been assessing his options ever since leaving AmaZulu earlier this year.
Speaking during a brief pitchside chat in England, the popular coach spoke about what an honour this appointment is.
“There’s no bigger stage than this. To be here is a privilege,” he briefly said, as reported by English journalist Tom McDermott.
“Hopefully we see a rejuvenated United and one that can challenge for getting into the Champions League.”
You can watch the clip of Benni chatting in Man United colours below:
Meanwhile, after McCarthy’s appointment, SuperSport coach Gavin Hunt has shared a special message to congratulate McCarthy on this massive move.
“Unbelievably proud of @bennimccarthy17. You’ve come so far my son. Sending you all guidance and love. Always a phone call away.”
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Understandably, social media has exploded ever since the news became public knowledge, and you can check out some of that reaction below:
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Manchester United released the following statement after confirming Benni McCarthy’s appointment:
The former South Africa striker was a boyhood Reds fan and scored twice against us for Porto in the 2003/04 Champions League knockout stages.
“I support Man United and always wanted to play for them,” he once said. “I loved players like Mark Hughes, Andy Cole and Ryan Giggs.”
The 44-year-old also represented the likes of Ajax, Blackburn Rovers and West Ham United during his distinguished career.
McCarthy left his post as AmaZulu head coach in March after guiding the South African team to a record second position in the league. In 2020/21, he was named the South African Premier League’s Coach of the Season.
The ex-forward will specialise in coaching attacking plays and positioning.
The coaching team is now in place ahead of the start of the 2022/23 season, with Brighton & Hove Albion visiting Old Trafford on Sunday 7 August in our Premier League opener.
Ten Hag will work closely with assistants Mitchell van der Gaag and Steve McClaren, with Benni slotting in alongside Eric Ramsay and Darren Fletcher as coaches. Former midfielder Fletcher also has a wider remit as technical director, overseeing the path from Academy to the first team, plus players out on loan.
Richard Hartis and Craig Mawson are the goalkeeping coaches.
Everybody would like to extend a warm welcome to Benni, upon joining the club.
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