SUNDERLAND, February 3 – Struggling Premier League side Sunderland added some much needed firepower to their out of form strikeforce on Tuesday with the loan signing of Zimbabwean international Benjani Mwaruwari from rivals Manchester City.’The Black Cats’ got the benefit of the doubt from the Premier League over signing the 31-year-old even though they failed to process the required paperwork before Monday’s 1700 GMT transfer deadline.
Sunderland boss Steve Bruce – whose side have been in freefall after a winless run of 11 games – had blamed technical problems for the delay.
Benjani – scorer of 29 goals in 43 international appearances – is a free agent in the summer but Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has said he can move on if he wants to.
"The paperwork was lodged but we had some huge, huge difficulties and we informed both the Premier League and the FA at the time," said Bruce after his forwards had once gain failed to make an impression in Monday’s 0-0 draw with Stoke.
Benjani earned his move to City after shining for Portsmouth, where he had scored 19 times in 70 appearances, in January 2008.
However, his time there has been ruined by several injuries and falling out of favour with Mancini’s predecessor Mark Hughes, although, he fought his way back into the first team when the Italian replaced the Welshman at the helm.