Midfielder Prince Buaben hopes his move to Partick Thistle can keep his World Cup dreams alive as he looks to gatecrash Ghana’s squad for Brazil.
Buaben was left heartbroken when his World Cup hopes four years ago were ended by injury just a month before the tournament in South Africa kicked off.
The 25-year-old now wants to make up for that by reclaiming his place in the Black Stars squad and admitted he had to leave Carlisle to make that happen.
Buaben signed a loan deal with Alan Archibald’s side.
On the reasons behind his move, Buaben said: “Myself and my agent have been speaking to the Ghana manager Akwasi Appiah and he told me I need to be playing at a good level to have a chance of going to the World Cup.
“I had an opportunity four years ago to go to the World Cup but I injured my knee in a friendly. The game was in Ghana and I wasn’t used to the surface.
“It was so hard to take and while I was hoping Ghana would win games in South Africa I could barely bring myself to watch any of the matches and only watched their quarter-final fixture where they lost on penalties to Uruguay. This time we’ve got a great group with Germany, the USA and Portugal and the fact that it’s in Brazil would make it a dream to be a part of – but I need to be playing first.
“The Ghana manager says I need to be playing in the top flight. I don’t mean any disrespect to League One in England but this is the Scottish Premiership.
“I was called up last year for a friendly against Nigeria but it was called off and then I got injured so I’ve not had many chances.
“I want to go to the World Cup. I know the manager likes me and always phones my agent to see how I’m progressing. There’s a lot of competition with the likes of Michael Essien and Kevin-Prince Boateng in the team so that highlights the quality the manager can call upon.
“I spoke to Essien and he told me to keep focused – even though we play in the same position, he always encourages me. He’s gone to AC Milan, I’ve come to Partick Thistle – maybe one day I’ll be at Real Madrid.”