Belfast Telegraph

Blackburn's Benjani lashes out at Manchester City players' greed

Blackburn Rovers' new striker Benjani Mwaruwari has claimed that there is "no trust" at his old club Manchester City and that some of their players are motivated primarily by money.

The Zimbabwe international agreed a deal with Rovers last week having been released earlier this summer by City, where he had spent a largely unsuccessful two-and-a-half-year spell.

With a raft of expensive new players arriving at Eastlands after he was signed in 2008 by then-manager Sven-Goran Eriksson, Benjani, whose time with City was marred by injury, was deemed surplus to requirements by current manager Roberto Mancini.

The 32-year-old forward has now proven his fitness sufficiently to win himself a contract at Ewood Park and while pleased at earning another chance to play in the Premier League, Benjani has also fired a parting shot at his former employers.

Asked what it was like to be at City when they were spending so much money, Benjani said: "It sounds great, but in football money is not everything. What is needed is people who can hang around and love you to be there.

"Sometimes you are loved to be there because of money, which is not good. I would prefer to be here without having all those facilities, be happy and trust everyone around you."

Asked if he thought some players at City were interested in money more than anything else, Benjani said: "Yes, it seemed like that and behind the scenes, there is no trust. I would prefer to play for a club where you are trusted and trust everyone around you."

Benjani admits he will have a fight on his hands to get into Blackburn's team but is just happy to have made a Premier League squad list at all.

Top-flight clubs each submitted lists of a maximum of 25 players for the first half of the 2010-11 campaign to the Premier League on Wednesday, with Tottenham's injured former England defender Jonathan Woodgate one of the more high-profile omissions. Benjani signed an initial one-year deal last week and, having struggled for fitness recently, the striker is relieved to have made the cut.

"I have been troubled by injuries and I am 32," Benjani said. "If by this time next season I still have a club in the Premier League, I will be very, very happy. At other clubs there are good players who they didn't register, but today I'm registered and I'm very happy."

The former Portsmouth manager Harry Redknapp brought Benjani to English football in 2006 and it is where the player hopes to see out the rest of his career. "I played in Switzerland and France and I have loved to come and play here in England," he said. "It is the best league in the world and I would love to end my career here."

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph