Football News

Harry praises Benjani


Harry praises Benjani

Harry Redknapp has praised Portsmouth striker Benjani Mwaruwari and the Portsmouth fans as they ended their goal drought and Benjani thumped home a hattrick against Derby today.

A delighted Redknapp said: "We pushed on after a bad start today and got the result we needed."

Pompey went a goal behind when Lewin Nyatanga struck after just five minutes and Redknapp added: "Benjani got three great goals but it was the crowd that lifted us.

"The fans could have got frustrated and moaned and turned against the team after so long without a goal but they don't do that here.

"The crowd's great, always has been for me, and that's one of the reasons I'm happy here. I've said Kevin Keegan is the right appointment for Newcastle - certainly their fans - and I wish him luck.

"When he first came here two seasons ago he couldn't score to save his life but he's getting them now.

"His strike rate used to be diabolical and that's being kind to him. He had 15 or 16 games after we signed him before he scored against Wigan when Paul Jewell was manager there in the last but one match of the season.

"But he covered all that with hard work and non-stop running. He's a smashing lad and the fans love him.

"Today he scored three different types of goals and you'll struggle to see a better one than the last one. He's come up the hard way. He's hard as iron, takes a knock and plays with injuries that most players would not.

"It was (Arsenal boss) Arsene Wenger who first put me on to him. We'd heard Benjani was available in France at Auxerre and I asked Wenger's advice. He said I should get on the next flight and go and get him."