SA's Benni McCarthy retires

South Africa's all-time leading scorer Benni McCarthy has retired from football.

In a statement on the PSL website the 35-year-old said: "Football has been good to me - it has provided special moments and enabled me to be in a position to have improved the lives of my family members.

"For that, I am most grateful.

"I have been so blessed to have enjoyed a remarkable career that took me from the township fields of Nyanga Stadium, to winner's medals in the Uefa Champions League and World Club Cup - the highest levels that a player can achieve in club football.

"I retire having represented my country at senior level 80 times and scored a record 31 goals. Two Soccer World Cup finals, in France and Korea/Japan, an Olympic Games and a u-20 World Cup Finals will be memories that live in my heart forever.

"And to have come home to South Africa for a final chapter, and to have won the treble with Orlando Pirates, was the type of finale that only dreams are made of."

Cape Town-born McCarthy was part of the FC Porto side that won the 2004 Champions League under Jose Mourinho and was infamously dropped from South Africa's final squad when the country hosted the 2010 World Cup.

He won four trophies with Pirates in 2012 and is the only South African to have won three league titles with three different clubs on two continents – with the Pirates, Ajax in Holland and FC Porto in Portugal.

"It has been a 17-year professional career that surpassed even my own expectations," McCarthy said.

Image: © Getty

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