The South African
Emotional Benni: Man United job is life-changing! [WATCH]
2 days ago
McCarthy has quickly settled into his new high-profile job as a first-team coach at Manchester United after it was officially confirmed last weekend that manager Erik ten Hag had added to his backroom team with the appointment of the South African soccer legend.


Benni was at Old Trafford last weekend as the Red Devils drew 1-1 with Rayo Vallecano in United’s final pre-season friendly, completing a blockbuster move that hardly anybody saw coming, while United are set to play their first Premier League game of the season against Brighton on Sunday.

In an exclusive interview with , McCarthy has now described how his appointment was “next level”, and felt like the reward for ensuring he never stopped chasing his dreams.

You can watch a clip of the interview below, or head here for the full video.

Reflecting on the appointment, another South African football legend, Quinton Fortune, has highlighted why it’s such a significant move, for more reasons than one.

“This will be an out-of-this-world experience for Benni,” Fortune told BBC Sport Africa. “If you look at what Benni has achieved in the game – a Champions League winner, league winner in Holland and Portugal, golden boot winner at the 1998 Nations Cup and in Portugal, together with his coaching qualifications, his appointment is a no-brainer,” the 45-year-old said. “I thought if Benni was going to be working only with the strikers, it was huge – but for me, it’s even bigger now that I’ve heard he will also be working with the midfielders and strikers.” “It’s a great move by the manager because Benni can speak Dutch, Portuguese, and Spanish. This is so good because it will inspire the kids back home who can see one of their own now being part of the coaching staff at a club as big as Manchester United, who have a huge following in South Africa and across the world,” he added. “It’s not only good for Benni but also for African coaches to show what’s possible.”

McCarthy’s agent Rob Moore recently revealed how the popular coach had to go for an interview, and also do a training assessment, to beat other candidates to the job as he sought to impress Ten Hag.

“Erik didn’t know Benni, neither did Erik’s assistant Mitchell [van der Gaag]. They didn’t know each other very well. I mean obviously Benni and Mitch had played against each other in Portugal,” Moore said on , as quoted by . “This was done completely only with Erik. As I say, though, it was a process. He had to be interviewed by Erik and the Director of Football at Manchester United John Murtough was also in the interview. “Then it had to be followed up, Benni had to do a session with the Man Utd U23 team under Erik’s watch. Erik was watching and analysing Benni’s suitability. “Then there were other people in contention for this job as well. It was a process that Benni had to go through. It was really good and quite an interesting process.”

McCarthy will be coaching the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial among other attackers in the current Manchester United squad.


Benni has been warmly welcomed at United

In a statement released on Monday, United said “the former striker has both the pedigree and knowledge to assist in sharpening up the team’s attack”.

Ten Hag was on the look-out for one more recruit to his backroom staff, in preparation for next weekend’s Premier League opener against Brighton & Hove Albion at Old Trafford, and felt his fellow former Ajax man fitted the bill.

The manager also elaborated on McCarthy’s specific role at Carrington, with the Reds preparing for life at home and abroad in 2021/22.

You can watch a clip of Benni chatting in Man United colours below: