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Benjani move confirmed

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As expected, the loan transfer of Benjani to Sunderland was confirmed today and it is all but certain that his career with us is now over with his contract set to expire at the end of the season.

It is a good move for Benjani as he remains in the Premier League and goes to a side where he will likely see plenty of playing, something he would not be afforded (despite his recent stint as a stand-in) with the return of Emmanuel Adebayor.

Steve Bruce clearly thinks he has landed himself a good player (and it must be noted that there was plenty of interest in him) anyway:
"He's a big, strong, powerful centre forward and one we've been tracking for a long time," Bruce said. "I'm delighted that we've been able to bring him to the club. He'll bring another dimension to our striking options and will be a great addition to the squad."
It is easy to dismiss Benjani's time at the club as a failure, yet he was in many ways a victim of the circumstances that have swept through the club over the past 12-18 months. When he first arrived, my view was that he was a useful, if somewhat underwhelming signing but he performed fairly credibly initially and of course etched his name into derby folklore with the his goal at Old Trafford in our 2-1 victory.

But when the significant money began to arrive he found himself frozen out of the side during the time Mark Hughes was in charge - perhaps surprisingly when you look back and consider options in attack were limited and both Ched Evans and Felipe Caicedo were regular fixtures in the starting line up.

His rather languid style may not have endeared himself to Hughes though and until his recent surprise recall he was well and truly cast into the wilderness. There can be no argument that our progress and ambition means his future lies elsewhere, but he always struck as an affable character and he certainly won't go with any ill will towards him.

Career stats:

Season Apps Goals
2007/08 13 3
2008/09 8(4) 3
2009/10 4(2) 1