West Ham striker not heading to Pompey

West Ham striker Benni McCarthy has endured a tough time this season
West Ham striker Benni McCarthy has endured a tough time this season
Brett Pitman. Picture: Joe Pepler

Posh manager wary of Pompey striker’s threat

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THE BLUES are not targeting Benni McCarthy to boost their loan contingent.

Reports have linked the West Ham striker with an emergency loan switch to Fratton Park.

McCarthy is desperate for first-team football to resurrect an ailing career which has seen him start just one match for the Hammers this season.

It has been claimed Avram Grant is willing to pay more than 80 per cent of the 33-year-old’s £60,000-a-week salary.

However, The News understands Pompey have no interest in McCarthy.

And that is a situation which is not expected to change during the remainder of the emergency loan window which ends on March 24.

Steve Cotterill already has a full complement of five loanees he can field in a match-day squad.

In addition, David Cotterill will today be arriving from Swansea as an emergency loan, taking that tally to six.

It means the Blues boss will be forced to leave one of his loanees out of the 18-man squad for Saturday’s visit of Barnsley.

That is even before a rumoured target such as McCarthy would be on board.

McCarthy’s wage demands would also be out of reach as the Blues look to become more financially stable.

As it stands, Tal Ben Haim collects the largest pay packet by a considerable margin at a reported £36,000-a-week.

Last month, John Utaka was sold to Montpellier, removing another big earner from the Fratton Park wage bill.

McCarthy has been linked with a Pompey switch several times in the past, most recently halfway through last season while with Blackburn.

But the Blues currently have no interest in doing business for the South African international.