As Wealdstone work hard to break into the Football League for next season, Zimbabwe international Kundai Benyu could be a key figure in helping the Stones get there.
The London outfit secured promotion to the National League last season, and now Benyu and company have their eyes set on trying to mix it up in League Two next term.
Benyu experience could be key
Despite being just 23 years old, Zimbabwean midfielder Benyu has already amassed plenty of experience, playing club football in three different countries. Starting out in Ipswich Town’s youth system, the playmaker went on to pen a four-year contract in 2017 with reigning Scottish Premiership champions Celtic.
While failing to break into the Hoops first-team on a regular basis, Benyu did get game time out on loan back in England with Oldham and in Sweden with Helsingborgs. Signing for Wealdstone in 2020, Benyu now finds himself settled at Grosvenor Vale, and his experience could be invaluable this season for a team seen as 40/1 outsiders with William Hill sports betting.
Benyu pushing for Zimbabwe return
Having made his debut for his country back in 2017 against Lesotho, Benyu has only been able to secure two caps for the Warriors. Playing for Celtic at the time, the then 19-year-old spoke of his enjoyment of the new experience of playing for Zimbabwe on debut, and said he was “convinced” the country had the quality to produce a strong national side.
While Benyu has dropped off the radar with Zimbabwe in recent years, Benyu’s efforts at Wealdstone will be hard to go unnoticed, especially if he can help the club finally reach the Football League.
Stones need to get back on track
Despite a recent run of five league games without a win, Wealdstone still find themselves in the promotion picture this season. An important home victory against Weymouth finally saw the Royals get back to winning ways, and manager Dean Brennan will be hoping his side can put together a positive run of results.
While it looks like Torquay United will take some stopping to be denied the Conference Premier title this season, Wealdstone are certainly in the mix to try and secure the other spot up into League Two. Avoiding winless runs like the one they have recently experienced will, of course, be key, and Benyu looks like he will have a big role to play in that midfield, if they are to land promotion this season.
Wealdstone in League Two, with Benyu in the midfield, could well see Zimbabwe head coach Zdravko Logarusic sit up and take notice of the former Celtic man. The focus for the national side at present is trying to get back to the African Nations Cup, with the next postponed tournament taking place in January and February 2022. Benyu will be hoping his efforts at Grosvenor Vale will see him add to his tally of international caps, and possibly feature in a major tournament for the first time in his career.