Writer: Johnny Baguette
Date:Tuesday February 5 2008
The bizarre events surrounding Benjani's transfer from Portsmouth, a club that he appeared to be well settled with and clearly adored to Manchester City have been head spinning to say the least. It's been a conspiracy theorist's dream and will remain so for some time to come.
The latest revelation is that City will pay Portsmouth only £3.87 million initially for the player, who will turn 30 in August. According to Pompey's Chief Executive, the fee will then rise once Benjani has turned out 25, 50 and 75 times in sky blue.
If you consider the fact that in these days of Premier League squad rotation mayhem, Jihai Sun has only appeared 88 times in 6 years for City, then this signing is certainly a back of the net job for MCFC.
One thing's for sure, if I was a Pompey fan, I would be rightly livid. It's been a sinister business all told. Agent riddled cloak and dagger boardroom wrangling and strange, contradicting media fuelling public statements from managers and executives combined to carry out a shambles of a transfer all overseen by the hapless Premier League. This episode also serves as a reminder that top flight English football continues to drift out of the fans hands. Loyalty clearly has a price.
Here are Benjani, MCFC Squad Number 27's career statistics...
1999-2001 Jomo Cosmos:
35 apps, 20 goals
2001-2002 Grasshopper-Club Zürich (loan):
25 apps, 1 goal
2002-2006 Auxerre, signed:
72 apps, 19 goals
2006-2008 Portsmouth, fee £4,100,000:
69 apps, 19 goals
Benjani is now in contention to lead the City attack in Svennis' lone striker system for the Manchester Derby on sunday.
All that remains for me now is to welcome him to Manchester City, in the form of a Nyanga greeting from Malawi, his family's country of origin courtesy our MCFC Vital man in Africa:
Benjani, Mulhi Bwanji Bwana Mwaluwalu Madyella? Banja langa Manchester City!
Benjani, How are you doing? Welcome to The Manchester City family!
Date:Tuesday February 5 2008
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