Kaizer Chiefs will play against the Citizens on Saturday afternoon at the Cape Town Stadium.
“Initially, after leaving England, I was going to go to play in the USA,” said Benni McCarthy. “I was training at Ajax Cape Town to stay fit. But because I had never seen a Soweto derby, I went up to Johannesburg to watch the game and that was where I met Pirates chairman Irvin Khoza. We had a chat and he persuaded me to sign for Pirates.”
McCarthy was linked with a return to the PSL to join Chiefs after leaving Europe, but Amakhosi football manager Bobby Motaung quickly dismissed the rumours stating the Bafana Bafana legend was “finished”.
“I guess what happened the night before (Motaung’s comments) was also important,” said McCarthy.
“I was at a restaurant and Bobby was at the same place. Afterwards, there were all the rumours that Chiefs were trying to sign me. But Bobby’s comments were that I was finished, I was past my best, that I was washed up and that I wasn’t a big fish anymore.
“So I always had that in the back of my head, which is why I was happy to sign for Pirates – to show Chiefs how washed up I was; I would show them what a big fish looked like. I guess still now you can say that whenever I play against Chiefs, even as a coach, they know I will be out to try to hurt them.”
McCarthy scored against Chiefs a number of times in the Soweto derby and won the treble with the Buccaneers. He reveals that he supported Chiefs as a young boy growing up in Cape Town.
“Overall, though, I still have a soft spot for Chiefs,” he said. “It’s the club I loved as a child. Growing up, I supported Chiefs. My dad was a massive Chiefs fan and as kids, if we didn’t support Chiefs, well, then we would have to find another place to stay.”
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