Boateng: Ghana prepared to fight and win this game
Kevin Prince Boateng speaks candidly to www.ghanafa.org about Ghana's World Cup qualification insisting the Black Stars haven't taken their leg off the gas as they ready for Tuesday's game against Egypt.
The player chatted with the GFA's official website on the eve of the World Cup qualifying play-off in Cairo.
Boateng believes the World will see a much better Black Stars to the one that reached the quarter-finals at the last World Cup.
He also speaks on his commitment to the national team and what it means to him to be a part of the Black Stars.
Ghana's preparedness for Egypt return
“Everybody is ready to play this important game."
"After the first leg you could see how strong the team performed even without me. And I am just trying to bring in my strength and what I can do and we are here to win this game because we want to go to the World Cup in Brazil and we know it's going to be a difficult game but we are prepared and want to win this game.”
Return to the Black Stars
“Of course I am very happy to be back. We manage to take away the issues with had and I see the group and a lot of young players and we are a very strong team.
“I want to be part of it and I am very happy to be back"
“I always used to follow them and used to talk to Sulley [Muntari] and wanted to know how it was going, how the new team is. I always said Ghana is in my heart and everybody who said something different doesn't know me. I always followed them and it's good to be back.
Team bonding and culture
“At the beginning it was a little bit different because it was a different culture.
“I was born in Germany and everybody knows about it I am used to it now. It's fun and the team is fun we like to dance and listen to music and I really enjoy it.”
"It's a like big family. We all have our jokes and sit together and even me, who doesn't speak the language, they translate for me because they want me to laugh with them or to understand what they are saying. It's like a big family, like the big brother telling the young brother how it is going to be. It is a great feeling in this team.”
Readiness for Egypt qualifier
“I would put in everything I will do in every game I play because this is the game I love and I love to play for Ghana, for the Black Stars and if the coach puts me on the field, I would give everything like always.”
No Ghana complacency
“No, because that's why in football, there's always the second leg. Two games, they can change so many things so that's why we should just put out of our heads we won 6-1 or that we even won the first game and just be prepared to fight and win this game and at the end of the day, we will know the result.”
Importance of reaching the World Cup
“For the team, definitely, another great experience together and I think so many people can grow in a tournament like that, can show their qualities.
“For me personally, of course to play in two World Cups, there are not a lot of people who can say after their careers that they played two World Cups. And especially, a team like Ghana if we qualify for the World Cup, we can be a big surprise because I think we are stronger than 2010.”
Criticism over his commitment
"No, it didn't hurt me. I was just disappointed. Every time I put on the shirt of the national team, I try to give everything. And I think that's commitment, nothing else we can do. Just put on the shirt and can give everything for the country. Of course, there were some occasions where I couldn't come because of my health. But I want to make clear, if I am not hundred percent fit, I would not come and play with Ghana with even fifty percent because if I come to play with my national team, I want to come healthy and give everything. It was not the question. I would never fake in my life an injury. People who know me, know I wouldn't play injured if it's not too much pain. This is not what can hurt me, the people who say things like this are not important to me. I am just disappointed that people think I would fake injury. I am a Ghanaian, hundred percent and I would show it in the future.”
Career injury from a tender age
"I was young and like every player, they have some problems with any muscles or whatever. I had problems with my knee but I am feeling much, much better. That's why I am here now and I am traveling all the time with the physio because I need my treatment. But it's going much better, you can see even in the Bundesliga, I can play now and I was able to score and that's what I want to do with the Black Stars, anytime I am fit, I would come here and try and give my best and score, of course.”
Family connection to Ghana
"We are all connected to Ghana because that's our roots, of course. I have a tattoo of Ghana on my body and my two brothers, we have the same tattoo. We have the continent of Africa and point out Ghana because this is where we are from. I think it means we are committed to our roots. Jerome [Boateng] is happy to be half-Ghanaian even if he decided to play for Germany. He's always asking about how Ghana is. He wants to come with me the next time I come to Ghana.”
Message to fans
"I want to salute all my fans and everybody who always believes in me and who would still believe me in the future. I can only say, I would always give everything for them because that's my love, football is my love. I know the fans are very important. I need them on my shoulders in good or in bad times. Whenever I need them they have to be there and whenever they need me, I would be there for them.”