Former captain of the senior national team, the Black Stars Stephen Appiah affectionately referred to as ‘Tornado’ has dubbed Ghana’s 2006 World Cup squad as the best he’s ever played with and also insisted the team was an all round one.
Serbian tactician Ratomir Dujkovic assembled a very strong side who were indeed a great force to reckon with. The squad comprised of players like Stephen Appiah himself who was the skipper, Michael Essien, Sulley Muntari, John Mensah, Sammy Osei Kuffour, Richard Kingston, Haminu Dramani, Asamoah Gyan and many other great players.
Their impressive output propelled Ghana’s historic journey to it first ever World Cup in Germany 2006. In the tournament, Ghana reached the round of 16 in their debut appearance after been evicted by Brazil.
However, Ghana also lost to Italy who were the eventual winners of the competition in their opening game, but picked vital victories over the 3rd ranked best national team then, Czech Republic and the USA to advanced from the group phase.
Considering all these, the former Juventus midfielder has disclosed the team was all round since the quality at the bench in 2006 were the same as those in the starting line up. Also it is the best squad he’s ever found himself into since playing for the senior national team. He told TV3’s Yaw Ofosu Larbi on Instagram in an interview with Betway;
“The 2006 squad was something else. The players on the bench were equal to those on the pitch.
“When we played against USA, we all saw Haminu Dramani’s performance but he didn’t start our first two games. Derek Boateng was as good as myself and Michael Essien.
“At the back, Shila Illiasu replaced Osei Kuffour against Czech Republic and we saw his performance. It was an all round team. Those who were on the bench were as good as the first 11. Michael Essien was playing so well at Chelsea and Muntari was playing very well too. We had Asamoah Gyan who was performing in his club, Olele was like a stopper. It was an all round team”, he landed.
By: Iddriss Abdul Rahim