Cape Town City coach Benni McCarthy has promised to get the best out of forgotten striker Tokelo Rantie and at the same time make sure the Bafana selectors notice him.
The 27-year-old Rantie‚ who helped Bournemouth gain promotion to the English Premiership a few seasons ago and also played in Sweden and Turkey‚ joined City on transfer deadline day last week and McCarthy said bringing him to the Mother City was like hitting the jackpot.
"He is a player who I am very fond of and I believe that I hit a little bit of a jackpot with him‚" McCarthy said after his side qualified for a second consecutive MTN8 final near Pretoria on Sunday after beating Mamelodi Sundowns 4-2 on penalties.
"He is a former teammate of mine at Orlando Pirates and I know his capabilities when he is at his best and when he is fit.
"He hit a bit of a rough patch, and everybody goes through that in life," said the coach.
The Premier Soccer League programme returns in two weeks due to the international Fifa break and McCarthy said his priority during this period would be to get Rantie fit.
"He is a world-class striker‚ now my main priority is to get him fit as soon as possible‚" he said. "When he gets going‚ good luck to the rest of the league, because he is unstoppable.
"With the rest of the fitness trainers and medical staff‚ we are going to make sure that he is fit and ready to play‚" McCarthy said‚ adding that a fit Rantie was an asset to Bafana Bafana.
"It is not only me who is going to benefit but Bafana Bafana as well.
"Irrespective of whether the coach is against him or not‚ why would they leave him out when he is banging in the goals?
"He can help us qualify for the World Cup, which is something we can’t seem to do," said McCarthy.
"He is a national gem and unfortunately beggars can’t be choosers, and in this instance Bafana are beggars.
"We could use all the best players that we have and try to make them fire on all cylinders.
"It is painful to sit at home and watch countries like Tunisia and Senegal‚ who never used to be better than us‚ competing at the highest level.
"We want SA to be back playing at the best tournaments, and in order for that to happen, we need to have our best players playing," he said.
"Getting Rantie to his best as soon as possible is going to be a tough challenge [because] in the coming months we have Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers and you will see him in the Bafana squad, and I don’t care who says what."