“Great players have failed to break my Bafana record” – McCarthy

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“All great players have come and have failed. It is not that it is such an impossible record to get, it is there for the taking and it must be taken by a player who is given services and right opportunities to get the goals and break that record.”

These are the words uttered by Bafana Bafana legend Benni McCarthy who believes that Percy Tau is very much capable of breaking his Bafana goal scoring record of 31 goals.

“I think Percy has got every quality to succeed in Europe and to surpass me as the all-time leading goal scorer in Bafana colours,” said McCarthy in an online press conference with the South African Football Journalists Association (Safja).

“Coach (Molefi Ntseki) has to play him in his best position where he will be able to play the kind of games that you expect an influential player to play but also, get opportunities to put the ball in the back of the net and change that scoring record,” – McCarthy. 

With age on his side, the 26-year-old Tau has found the back of the net on 9 occasions in 21 matches for South Africa thus far and McCarthy is certain that the Witbank-born star will break his long standing record provided the Bafana head coach Ntseki plays him in the right position.

“When he plays for Bafana, they have to play him in his most favourable position. I think the unfortunate part for Percy [is that] he always suffers a setback because he is such a versatile player.

“Coaches take it upon themselves to play him on the wing, to play him behind the number nine. When you have such quality of a player, you have to ask him where is he most comfortable and where are you going to get the best out of that player,” said the former Cape Town City coach.

“If Percy says he is the number nine, he should play the number nine. Every other number nine should compete for that position,” – McCarthy. 

“Let’s not shift a top player into a wide position to accommodate the one doing well at their clubs. The only way Percy will excel wearing that South African shirt is by playing him in his natural position.”

Players who came close to breaking McCarthy’ record include Shaun Bartlett ranked second on the Bafana all-time leading top scorers with 29 strikes, followed by Katlego Mphela and Kaizer Chiefs veteran striker Bernard Parker with 23 goals each.

However, Mphela has the best conversion rate amongst the Bafana goal scorers as he scored 23 goals in 51 appearances.

Tau is currently on loan to Club Brugge from Premier League (PL) side Brighton and Hove Albion for the 2019/20 campaign.

The former Mamelodi Sundowns star player recently won the Belgian League with Brugge, netting 3 goals and providing 4 assists in 20 league games.

RELATED STORY: Bafana coach urges patience over Percy Tau

By Tokelo Martin Mokhesi 

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