Bencherif Rides In

ARGYLE manager John Sheridan has boosted his Pilgrims’ squad on transfer deadline day...

...with the signing of Algerian Under-20 international midfielder Hamza Bencherif.

Hamza, 25, joins on a short-term contract following a successful Home Park trial and completed his registration in time to be able to play in Tuesday night’s Johnstone’s Paint Trophy first-round tie at Cheltenham.

Hamza has played in England since 2007, most lately for Notts County, who released him at the end of last season.

He has been on trial at Home Park for the past week, and played 78 minutes of the Pilgrims’ development friendly against Bristol City last Tuesday.

After the game, Argyle manager John Sheridan said: “Fitness-wise, he is way behind the other players – he needs to be playing games – but I know what he’s all about and he’s a good player at this level.”

“He has played against my teams a couple of times and he has been strong. He has got a presence about him.”

Hamza started his career in England with Nottingham Forest before being loaned to League 2 Lincoln City in October 2007, where he played 13 games.

He was released by Forest at the end of the 2008–09 season and joined Macclesfield Town, for who he made 68 appearances and scored 16 goals in two seasons.

He joined League 1 Notts County at the beginning of the 2011-12 campaign, and made 40 appearances for the Magpies over the last two seasons, scoring twice.

The terms of Hamza’s deal takes in all our games up to and including our home match against Torquay United on New Year’s Day.

He will wear the number 20 shirt while he is at Home Park.