Three gunmen stormed a barber’s shop in Johannesburg’s Melrose suburb robbing the 37-year-old of his wedding ring, watch and other valuables. He was not injured.
McCarthy’s agent Percy Adams said the robbers targeted just the striker – who helped Portugal’s Porto to win the 2004 Champions League under Jose Mourinho – in a packed salon.
The robbers ignored nine other patrons in the hairdressers.
“They didn’t even touch other people, they didn’t want money, nothing, they just went for him, took what they got from him and then left,” Adams told Talk Radio 702.
McCarthy is post-apartheid South Africa’s leading scorer with 31 goals, including eight at the 1998 Africa Cup of Nations in Burkina Faso where Bafana Bafana finished runners up.
He went on to play in Europe including Portugal, Spain and England with Blackburn and West Ham.
He is currently studying for a UEFA coaching licence with Scottish club Hibernian
Several South African sporting stars have been victims of crime in the past year, including Bafana Bafana goalkeeper Senzo Meyiwa, shot dead during a suspected robbery last year.