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Return for One, Exit for Another?

As speculation mounts about the future of one striker (Benni McCarthy) the possible return to Blackburn Rovers of another (Craig Bellamy) increases.

The rumour mills have been working overtime again, with Benni McCarthy again ALLEGEDLY (I must stress this allegedly point!) voicing his eagerness to make a quick exit from Ewood Park.

At the WKD Nuts Football Awards 2007, Benni is quoted as saying:

"It's not like I owe them my life or they owe me for bringing me into the Premier League, for which I am totally grateful, and they will always have a place in my heart.

"With the goals I've scored and the work I've put in, in that way I've paid back my dues.

"If something extraordinary does come and it's a big team, a Champions League team, then I would love to ask for the opportunity to try my fortunes at a higher level, at the biggest stage.

"I'm still a Blackburn player but I'd love to play in the Champions League again.

"When you come from a Champions League team you miss playing against the likes of Barcelona, Milan and the big-shots of world football
."

The showpiece of the English football season takes place on Saturday afternoon, this showpiece of course being the FA Cup Final at Wembley. Benni admits he'll be an interested spectator but hopes Chelsea win because of his friendship and history with Jose Mourinho, and then (again allegedly) hopes they will make a move for him, he added:

"I've grown up supporting Manchester United and I still love them but on the other hand I've got a lot of friends at Chelsea and one special friend who is Mourinho.

"We go a long way back and he's been amazing to me. I've only got good things and great memories about him. Obviously I want Chelsea to win because of Mourinho, Carvalho, Ferreira and all my mates like Drogba, Essien and Makelele.

"Hopefully if they win they can probably build a stronger team. Next season he (Mourinho) will want to win the league and Champions League.

"He'll want to come for bigger and better players and hopefully I'll fall in the category that he'll look for
."

So there you have it, once again (if true) Benni is voicing his desire to move on, a desire not well appreciated by Robbie Savage who (among other things) told the Lancashire Telegraph:

"We've got a great manager, great coaching staff and some terrific players, so it bugs me when people see this club as a stepping stone.

"Craig Bellamy had a great season when he was here - probably one of the best of his career - but then he upped and left for Liverpool last summer. Now there's talk of Benni McCarthy moving on to bigger and better things.

"At the end of the day, the grass isn't always greener elsewhere
."

The grass isn't always greener and Craig Bellamy has found this out! But the Welsh International, who has been linked with a Rovers return for many months has (again in speculation, in the Daily Mirror!) apparently said he would welcome a return to Ewood Park and such a move could be VERY possible during the summer…


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The Journalist

Writer: Walker Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday May 17 2007

Time: 1:19PM

Your Comments

I know it's ALWAYS likely to be the case, but I totally agree with Sav, players should stop viewing Rovers as a stepping stone, we are better than that and have the potential to do something special!
Hughes Da Man
How much of what Benni has said is true, I don't know but would say quotes can only be "taken out of context" or "manipulated" so many times, so I'm tending to come round to the idea Benni REALLY wants out. He's usually careful and only makes it seem like it's the challenge of something bigger that appeals to him though but seems to show a little less respect here (if true?!?!) However, this doesn't mean he'll get his wish though as we all know that Sparky can dig his heels in. He might do well to listen to Sav!!! As for Bellamy, I'm still not sure on how I'd feel about him returning?!?! I'm not so sure bringing him back if we do keep McCarthy is a good idea but we all know what he can do. IF Benni goes I'd certainly welcome a return as it would soften the blow (not completely though!) of losing Benni. How ironic it would be if the man who arrived to replace a man who left a year later became the man replacing the man who had replaced him!
Hughes Da Man
Mccarthy to Man U and Bellamy to Rovers ... I think tahts the way it will end up panning out anyways
dazednconfuzed
I was not sure Rovers would win the race for Bellamy a while back but now if he does leave Liverpool (as looks HIGHLY likely) I can't really see him going anywhere else?!?! Would I like this, still unsure to be honest. I'd LOVE to keep Benni but it's not looking good, IF Chelsea or Manure come in for him I'd say we would only see a cartoon style outline puff of him left behind as he speeds off!
Hughes Da Man
Can't see it myself HDM - Benni has always had verbal diahorrea issues. All he has done is state that if a top club came in, then he'd be interested. What professional player could honestly say they wouldn't do the same. He's not said he wants out, far from it, he's said he loves it here, but in the same token he'd love the potential to prove himself on a grander scale. Can't blame him for that. If we get a daft offer, he'll go. I can't see him manipulating a way out - He seems extremely honourable, if a little eager to give the press a complete life story.
Head Rover Heels
Here is what i think we will happen. McCarthy out, hope we get 10 mill plus. Franny will leave. That leaves us with Roberts, Derbyshire. I really hope we dont sign Nonda. Bellers will come in for 7-8 mill. Leaves us a striker short, esp with offers comin in for roberts. If we get offered 4 mill plus i think we should take it, possible leaving us with derbs and bellers. Mr Mark Viduka, available on a free transfer, i think that should be our option. No1 has brought this up yet but i really think his physical presence, much more effective then roberts, will give bellers all the space in the world. The free transfer gives us an opportunity to further invest, maybe a forsell typ player, cheape and young what you guys think
sasman
I think it depends on Jose at Chelsea, if he getst he sack as the papers are also saying then I dont see Benni going, the papers have gotton the hold of the connection between these 2 from Porto and ran with it. If Jose wanted him, he would have brought him with him wouldnt he?? He did with others in the team! Benni should remember this, as Chelsea are not to going to wait to see how he'd perform in the Premiership now are they, they didnt with the other buys. Jose knows what Benni has to offer and never went back for him, I think that says it all. If the papers are actually running with a true story ( for once ) then u'd expect that we talking £10 - £15m+ fro Benni, I read that Sissoko is possibly a £15m target for Juve and he may be younger but a bit part player for 'Pool shouldnt go for more than a proven goal scorer
Clint
I hear you Head Rover Heels, and maybe I'm too quick to worry and read into the negative side of things too quickly. I agree he is always careful not to flat out say he wants to do and does express his happiness at Rovers but wants more. While I can understand him wanting more did he HONESTLY think we could break into the top four last season, let alone during his three-year contract?!?! Obviously I hope we can but think it would be foolish to think we will.
Hughes Da Man
As for Bellemy, I know I was one that said we didnt need him but if its on the cards I rather see him come in ( with Benni ) and us not sign Nonda. As the only other position we need to fill is probably in midfield we jsut need a cover player - wot with Mokeona coming through, Dunn will get his fittness back and Reid to come back from injury along with Savage, it would prob be on the wings to act as cover for the Pederson and Bents ( although we have Peter, Treacy and Emerton )
Clint
sasman - Viduka is quality and I like the guy but will we really pay him 60 grand a week?!?! I sooo hope JR stays, he's got A LOT to offer Rovers.
Hughes Da Man
Clint - Agree mate, we SHOULD be looking for £10 million minimum (providing no clause is in place!) and again agree, why should Chelsea have the chance to get him not, Mourinho SHOULD know what Benni is all about, so making him "prove" himself isn't something that should have had to have happened. As you say he's spent a fortune on others others with no real histroy apart from his Porto day links, WHY didn't he do so with Benni at the time, think about this McGoalmachine! I was also one that didn't want Bellers back, but if Benni went I'd have Bellers back in a heartbeat! Keith Treacy made the bench didn't he on Sunday as cover for PEDERSEN, PEDERSEN, PEDERSEN :) lol, which was cool. Had we been in a UEFA Cup spot, or it was assured he (and others) would have played the last couple of games
Hughes Da Man
I thin don't for the love of christ get rid of Roberts... he is crucial to progress next year!!!! If Benni really, really wants to go then he can go but only for £10 million +.... Bellamy is still a great player and if he can be attained for 7-8 million and Benni has left then lets get him.
MikeyGamst
Keith Treacy is a solid player. he aint quite ready yet but Peter is... get him played more...
MikeyGamst
Agreed on the Benni ideas Mikey, if he is so keen to go, so long as it's on ROVERS' terms and their interests and not his if the money is right let's not stand in his way, chances are he'll become the latest in a line to find the grass isn't always greener! IF Benni goes I would have to think too much about getting Bellers back. Send Treacy out on oan next season for the first part I reckon, give Sergio more of a run and then all being well Treacy could get a little burn at the tail end of 07-08, along with the likes of Garner, Di Vita and the African kid who was raised in Germany (can't think of his name?)
Hughes Da Man
African kid raised in Germany??? sounds like a dodgy combo... lol
MikeyGamst
lol, Mamadi Keita is the guy I was thinking of, plays in the Acadamy side but signed his first contract at the end of '06.
Hughes Da Man
OH yeah... was he raised in Germany???? Didnt realise that at all.....
MikeyGamst
As far as I am aware he is a German national. He's only 17 but has great promise, so maybe a loan could be in order for him to get that first team football, see if he's got the potential he seems to have?!?!
Hughes Da Man
Am I the only one that's still a bit bitter about Bellamy leaving then.. ?
Bents4eng
Maybe we'll buy darren bent? guessing he'll be moving (to spurs prob seeing as they buy everyone) come the summer
Bents4eng
Nah mate, you aint the only one. I'm bitter about a lot of things that happen in football these days, Bellamy is certainly one of them. Maybe this is part of my "I'm not sure I want him back" feeling (if Benni goes without doubt I think I would though) I think I'd be more bitter if Benni leaves though, all the crap that he's repaid us with his goals etc. isn't washing with me, as harsh as this may seem.
Hughes Da Man
Darren Bent, he is quality but I'm not overly convinced he's maybe as good as a lot of people think?!?! I'd rather we tried moving mountains to bring in Nugent! I know he's not exactly young but if we are talking about Viduka (we'll not pay 60 grand a week I'm almost 100% certain) what about someone like Fowler?!? Liverpool are releasing him aren't they? Wages could be an issue again though? Strikers seem to come and go quickly so if we keep with the pattern we show could Fowler not do a job for a season (maybe two?) whilst some of our HIGHLY promising young forwards continue to progress?
Hughes Da Man
I've never been entirely convinced by Bent, but then he does/did play for charlton... there's not exactly much quality service going on there. With bents and MGP I can't help but feel we've got the best service in the league (with the possible exception of ronaldo and giggs for united). I've always thought they just been a target to hit a lot of the time.. same with manu... a player like bent would probably score 20 goals in the premiership with ease with that kind of service.
Bents4eng
im not particularily bitter about Bellemy leaving at least he was honest and said that he wanted to play for Liverpool and had done since he was a kid, I was disappointed with the low value of his release clause but aprt from that he was honest enough, you cant deny a player that wants to play at a higher level, although granted this has not worked out the best for him! I would like to see if him and Benni could work together but supposedly the Hammered are after Craig now
Clint
We could never afford Bent, he is one of those players coveted by 5-6 clubs... a bidding war will happen and we will get priced out of the market.... buy Bellamy, Ididnt want to at first but I have turned my thought around...
MikeyGamst
Service can make a lot of difference can't it, with the suplly he'd get from us you are spot on Bents4eng but as MikeyGamst says (and I totally agree) we couldn't afford him. IF (the big if) we do sell Benni I'd not be overly impressed if the £10-15 million we SHOULD get for him was spent on Bent to be honest, don't think you can justify paying that much for Bent, although I'm sure the Hammered or Spurs will! If the Hammered want Bellers as Clint suggests then IF he is motivated like money like, well you know who, he'll go as he'll be offered BIG money. As I've said previously in this thread (and now in another) if we are going to adopted the policy, which we seem to (obviously we don't want this!) that strikers only have a year or two's shelf live at Rovers if Benni goes and we don't get Bellers (who I would like back now I think similarly to MikeyGamst, but I would ONLY if Benni goes) then could Fowler not do a job for a year or two?
Hughes Da Man
Its not that we couldnt afford Bent but he wouldnt settle for 3rd or 4th choice, there are lots of good wee English strikers in the lower leagues like the wee lad from Southend, but they cost too much money for relatively unknown players at a higher level of football. Fowler has a lot still to give and is a natural finisher, maybe the best I have seen in my days, so why not get him, the youngsters would have him and Benni and Hughes to learn off, not bad I'd reckon. I would have Fowler b4 Nonda anyway
Clint
Oh and i've just thought, wot about Djibil Cisse ( i think i've spelt that wrong ) but I always though he was a decent player at Liverpool but never really got his chance, I think he may be able to do a job for us, anyone else??
Clint
i stil hold a grudge with bellamy and i have personally enjoyed the fact that he hasnt scored a lot of goals this season and point out the diff between him and benni but i dont think it would be a good idea gettin him back cos of supposed rifts with him and tugay and others but then he mite not want to go on after a year so long term a better option-confusin! as i have said before if benni goes he will be the biggest *****er ever he would stil be on de bench at porto if not for hughes i hope its just paper talk!
durks de rover
I've found another Fowler worshipper in Clint lol. Cisse is a player that needs a run of games, is obviously a quality footballer but the pressures of Liverpool seemed too much, the injury clearly didn't help. He's available at around £2.5 million apparently, not a lot is it really, espeically when you think what they paid! durks you make a BRILLIANT point. I ALWAYS had the reason of the fall out with others as my prime reason for not wanting Bellers back and TOTALLY forgot this! MGP, Tugay and Reidy (maybe others?!?!) had problems with Bellers didn't they.
Hughes Da Man
thanks hdm i like the way you highlighted brlliant point there makes me feel good! cisse forgot him but did he not have a bad seasonthis year and the team that signed him dont want to keep him so i dont know if i would be excited to see him in a rovers shirt!
durks de rover
not cisse!!!! never! He was chronic at Liverpool.. In fact the only thing I remember him doing was dummying the ball when about 5 yards offside against Rovers then them going on to score to everyone's utter disbelief that the ref had neglected to give offside. B*****d! Robbie Fowler or VIduka are both great players, both a little past it by now though. I hear what your saying about the younger players learning off them (especially fowler).. but we HAVE sparky, one of the best around in his day! That said I could see fowler linking up with Derbyshire well.. no need to run around too much, just feed Derbs! On the other hand can't really see jr and fowler working too well, nor nonda.
Bents4eng
Would rather Djibril Cisse for £500,000 more than Nonda. Djibril has age on his side also as well as the fact that he is a phyical player with pace to burn!
BomBom
Marseille want to keep him but i think for £2.5M he's a better option than Nonda, younger, quicker and with something to prove to the English game, unfortunately he did suffer one of leg breaks in an accident against us, so may go against us if the club were interested lol i really really really rate Fowler HDM alwaysd have done and Ithink he still has something to offer at the highest level
Clint
Yup, i can't see Cisse having fond memories of Ewood park, although i guess he does know that the medical staff are top notch (i remember him publically thanking them) and with him being made of glass, it's probably one of the things he's looking for.
Head Rover Heels
made of glass thats a good one but again just shows me that i dont want him whats the point in signin a player so we can pay his hospital bill? im comin round to the idea of bellamy he might be a bit different now after his reality check at anfield?!
durks de rover
I still want Viduka lol. I doubt he is askin for 60k, im sure Cisse and Bellers will be askin for more then this
sasman
I would like to see Bellemy and Benni together, just to see if the partnership would work, although im worried that Bellemy may see this as a step down or backwards, though def not as far back as a move to West Ham would be for him! there would be options out there depending on whether Benni leaves, we get Bellemy back etc Hughes will no doubt surprise us with something, thats wot I like about the man, as well as his undoubted golden touch with our club, its these players picked up from no-where that just seem to work - except Jeffers and Kuqi lol
Clint
durks de rover - I'm glad I could brighten up your day lol.
Hughes Da Man
I would be VERY, VERY surprised to see Viduka looking for anything less than 60 grand a week, it's a slippery path to go down giving some players amazingly high wages even if they come in on a free, the green eyed monster rears it's ugly head doesn't it. so many names floating around isn't there, will be interesting when we look back on this in a few months time and we've signed no one apart from Nonda lol :) Nah, we'll sign players if Sparky thinks we need to wont we (subliminal message to EVERYONE (who needs convincing) and Sparky, I know he's a Vber and avid reader of Vital Football lol, get Fowler!)
Hughes Da Man
Benni is a much better play than old hunchback and you should be concentrating on keeping him over anything else this summer
EvertonMike
evertonmike u are a wise man if benni stays we have no need to do anything to our front line except get rid of francis"im a waste of space" jeffers - dats a funny middle name for u HDM and its weird cos its his real one i didnt even make it up
durks de rover
I often wondered what the "IAWOS" was between Francis and Jeffers on the teamsheet lol. EvertonMike I don't think it's us that need to be concentrating on keeping Benni, this is not a issue, it's with him WANTING to stay here that looks like being the problem.
Hughes Da Man
Jeffers has gone on with titus bramble to join the elite group of players who peak at 17. Can't believe we got 8.5 mil for him, that was back when fee's were generaly less too. Benni will stay if you make the right signings to show your a club on the up not happy with 10th.
EvertonMike
The table doesn't generally lie does it Mike, so we finished tenth because we were tenth best over 38 games but I genuinely do think we are better than our tenth place, even if this that would be "punching above our weight". ALL clubs have injuries don't they but we had key first team STARTERS not just squad members missing for long, long periods of the season and this didn't help, especially with a small squad. Benni SHOULD already know where we are really and where we want to go but Champions League is what he wants, he'll be unlikely to get that here... ... for a few years ;) Leaving for as much as he did when he did was probably the beginning of the end for Franny "IAWOS" Jeffers wasn't it, but you couldn't blame him for doing so, or the club for taking it could you.
Hughes Da Man
 

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