Rabiu was part of the historic Ghana U20 squad of 2009
Midfielder Rabiu Mohammed has revealed turning his back at Emmanuel Agyemang-Badu’s decisive penalty kick that won Ghana the FIFA U20 World Cup in 2009.
The Black Satellites became the first and only African country to have won the U20 World Cup after beating Brazil on penalties despite playing most of the game with a man down.
Daniel Addo had been sent off within 20 minutes which saw Sellas Tetteh’s side defend throughout the game and at times looked very vulnerable to conceding.
But the team’s immense unity and determination coupled with a stroke of good luck saw the dominant Brazilians held throughout 120 minutes of football and into sudden death in the penalty shoot outs.
Agyemang-Badu stepped up to take the winning penalty after Brazil had offered the opportunity through a missed kick in sudden death.
The then Recreativo Huelva loanee tucked his kick in neatly, sending the goalkeeper the wrong way to win the World Cup for Ghana.
Rabiu Mohammed in recounting the memorable night in Cairo reveals though he was confident Agyemang-Badu was going to score, he refused to witness the kick due to the bubbling emotions.
“I had been replaced so I was on the bench,” he recounted on the latest episode of GFA TV to air on Metro TV this Sunday at 2pm local time.
“I knew Agyemang-Badu was an expert in penalty kicks so I had no fears when he went to take it.
“I just wanted him to get on with it so we can finish the game.
“But there was heightened anxiety even though I was extremely confident in Agyemang-Badu’s ability to score.
“So I didn’t watch the kick and all I saw was he taking off his shirt and we chasing after him. I never saw that kick.”
The Kuban Krasnodar man also relived the difficult period during the game following the early sending off of Daniel Addo.
“The sending off came twenty five minutes to halftime so it was very tough on us.” Rabiu recalled with nostalgia.
“Things were not easy and Dede Ayew was the captain. So we had to change our game plan, we committed ourselves to defend and ceded possession to Brazil.
“So the Brazilians had a filled day with possession with their skills and all. The fans were hailing them but then Dede Ayew told us to keep holding our ground and never to be worried about how they were playing most of the game.
“We had at the time had some experience playing in Europe so we were quite conversant with doing the hard tactical stuff.
“They were playing all the football and we were doing all the defending. Then we went in for halftime and there we decided were weren’t going to play a striker.
“So Dede Ayew had to slot in at the left-full back position and the others also took defensive positions. I remember [Dominic Adiyia] dropped into the right wing position too.
“We didn’t want a goal, we wanted to prevent one. So after 71 minutes the Brazilians started crying on the pitch and it gave us more confidence to fight on.
“Then when they got chances, they messed them up. It was there that we realized that the gods were with us.”
The full version of Rabiu Mohammed’s riveting interview with GFA TV airs this Sunday on Metro TV at 2pm local time.