Ghana midfielder Sulley Muntari plays historic 50th game for AC Milan
By Ameenu Shardow
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Ghana midfielder Sulley Muntari reached another milestone in his impressive football career by making his 50th appearance for AC Milan in the 3-0 thrashing of Livorno on Saturday.
The 29-year-old was playing his 50th game in a Rossoneri shirt when he came on as a second half substitute on his return from injury in the Serie-A game at the San Siro.
Muntari made an initial loan move to Milan on transfer deadline day in January 2012 while on international duty with the Black Stars at the Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea from cross-town rivals Inter.
The former Portsmouth man had returned from a six-month loan stint at English Premier League club Sunderland following his extensive bench warming role at Inter first under Gian Piero Gasperini and then under Claudio Ranieri.
Muntari returned to Milan after the Nations Cup to score on his debut on February 19 in a Serie-A away game against Cesena.
The Ghana international never looked back as he revived his career from virtual obscurity under manager Massimiliano Allegri.
His revival included what was later known as the ‘ghost goal’ in a crucial game against Juventus when he headed in a cross which was adjudged never to have crossed the goal line when indeed it did by 30 centimetres.
The game ended 1-1 which helped Juventus’ bid to clinch the Serie-A title when it could have easily headed the other way had Muntari’s goal been given.
The Black Stars enforcer later made his move permanent as a free agent when his contract ended with Inter in the summer of 2012.
The ex Udinese man then faced a tragic moment when he picked up a bad knee injury while playing a local football match in his native Ghana while on summer holidays.
The injury kept him out for most parts of the 2012-13 season.
He however returned strongly to again etch his name in Milan folklore by scoring a second against Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League with fellow Ghanaian Kevin-Prince Boateng scoring the opener – Milan however failed to hold onto the 2-0 advantage to exit the competition at the Round of 16 stage.
Muntari has since gone on to make other memorable appearances for the Rossoneri including infamous sending offs and other explosive strikes up to this point when he made his 50th appearance for the European giants.
GHANAsoccernet.com salutes Sulley Muntari on his meteoric milestone at AC Milan.