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Benni Explains Shabba Exit

Benni McCarthy has explained why AmaZulu opted to release “icon” Siphiwe Tshabalala.

The 36-year-old was one of five players who were released by Usuthu earlier in the week.

Tshabalala joined AmaZulu last season amidst much fan fare but he only featured in two DStv Premiership games, with McCarthy explaining that Shabba was released to give younger players a chance to shine.

“That’s football, life happened,” he told reporters, when asked what happened to Shabba.

“I’ve got a group of young, talented players that won’t come through, if we keep holding on to the senior players. 

“Shabba has been a fantastic player to have, he has given knowledge that he had, passed it on to the team and he might feel that he could still give more than that. And I definitely think so. 

“But for me, the way the game has evolved the way how fast the game is. These young boys they run for fun and it’s about speed and the way we play. 

“I play a very high pressing game. I like my front men to work really hard. And if you don’t have that hard work ethic, then you’ll find yourself struggling to get into the team. 

“And I think at times, the pace of the game was just ahead of us, because Shabba is from my generation. He’s given us unbelievable qualities, he’s a brilliant football player, super nice guy. Very good for the young players around him, is always helpful. And he’s been phenomenal. 

“If you hold on to the senior players, the young players just not going to get a shout. They’re not going to get the opportunity. And if they close to the level of the senior players, then you have to throw them in. 

“It was time you make a decision. It’s a tough decision. You lose an icon of the game. But you gonna gain another superstar, another icon in a few years time, while they are 19 give them the opportunity. 

“And that’s what I’m about, I’m not afraid to make those decisions. Some people like, some people don’t. 

“It was a legend and that but time comes for everyone. So it felt that it was the right decision, to have young players break through from the MDC ranks, getting their way into the first team. So you have to make those kinds of decisions. And that’s what happened to Shabba.”

Siyabonga Mbatha, Sphelele Magubane, Talent Chawapihwa, and Samuel Darpoh were the other four players released by Amazulu.