2014 World Cup: Time for Essien and Boateng to step up

Published on: 29 May 2014
2014 World Cup: Time for Essien and Boateng to step up
Michael Essien (left), KP Boateng

By Lewis Doe 

Ghana will fancy their chances of getting out of a World Cup group which contains both Germany and Portugal.

The Perception

The perception of this Ghana side is pretty simple. They have an extremely talented squad and a good blend of both younger talent and experience. They like to enjoy themselves when they play, impressive to watch when they’re well on top but they sometimes struggle to dig in and grind out more difficult results.

The Reality

Ghana have some very good individuals and a decent sense of team spirit. One of their main problems is that they carry around one or two egos, which raises the possibility that tempers can boil over at a big tournament. When things fall apart, the higher profile individuals can go missing, rather than drawing everyone together to force themselves back into the game.

Strengths

Muntari (left), Essien (right)
Muntari (left), Essien (right)
One of the main strengths in this Ghana team is power and pace. They have extremely strong midfield players such as Michael Essien, who make it difficult for any opposition team to enjoy time and freedom on the ball. They have pace in wide areas through the likes of Chelsea’s Christian Atsu and creativity through the middle provided by someone like Kevin-Prince Boateng or Sulley Muntari.

Weaknesses

John Boye
John Boye
The defence looks a little vulnerable. There is experience provided through Jon Mensah but it’s an area of this Ghana side that Germany, Portugal and the USA will look to attack. The full-backs have plenty of pace down either side, but they lack a little bit of top flight experience, which will be crucial with so many talented players in the German and Portuguese national teams.

Key Player

Kevin Boateng
Kevin Boateng
Ghana’s key player is Boateng, just ahead of Muntari. Boateng is one of the Ghanaians who has been accused of previously carrying an ego around. However, there were several reports last season of where he’d played a more mature role at FC Schalke, helping several of the team’s younger players to step up and develop. If he can show that level of maturity then he may well finish as Ghana’s player of the tournament. It will also help if he stays fit.

One to Watch

Jeff
Jeff
It will be fascinating to see how Jeffrey Schlupp plays at this tournament. The 21-year-old has just been promoted to the Premier League with Leicester City and has previously been scouted extensively by Manchester United. He will be faced up against Cristiano Ronaldo if he starts against Portugal and if he plays well in that game, he stands a great chance of ensuring Ghana get a result.

Verdict

Ghana are one of the most difficult teams to predict ahead of the World Cup. They can turn up and look as though they’re going to win the tournament but when things go against them, they can let their heads drop. The experienced players have to stop that from happening, egos need to be put to one side and the team has to fight for every point in Group G.

Do you think Ghana will get one over on Germany and Portugal?

Comments

  • kuukuphilly
    says: 5 years ago
    I don't see the reason why ...
  • risky
    says: 5 years ago
    Fantastic analysis of our team by a neutral.
  • wilson
    says: 5 years ago
    if essien & boateng should come to the party then anything can happened
  • Godfred Eku
    says: 5 years ago
    Hopefully,Ghana Black will do well than last four years
  • Louis Philippe
    says: 5 years ago
    I like Ghana and Portugal to advance to the next stage. I am a little bit worried about the inexperience of the back 4. I do like Ghana chances to advance
  • Beast
    says: 5 years ago
    Keep telling the world who is weak in our team and they will come all hands on deck at him. Some reports are no necessary. Just shut up for once! Are you telling us what we already know or you just love exposing our team?
  • Askantwi
    says: 5 years ago
    Thank you my man. I love your feed backs. You are doing far better than ghanasoccernet. please send me some pictures of Andre, Kwadwo, Muntari, Atsu, Prince and Kwarassey.
  • abass caesar
    says: 5 years ago
    i ve de full convidence dat if ghana triumph over usa, den ghana wil surely win n lose btn de remaining 2 games.but de posible win is surely over de portuguese
  • Ebenezer Quist (EQAY)
    says: 5 years ago
    The presence of Isaac Vorsah would have helped the team with the flight discrepancies. Kwesi Appiah should have just been a bit tolerant with his "no team, no place for you" policy. I would have had no fear at all. All the same, I believe the Black Stars can still sparkle a suprise-they always do
  • CAP'N PLANET
    says: 5 years ago
    THE KEY TO OUR SUCCESS WILL BE THE WEATHER;HEAT AND HUMIDITY WILL BE LIKE OUR NORTHERN PART OF THE COUNTRY IN THE DRY SEASON.IT'S GOING TO BE TOUGH TO BREATHE. . WE WILL NEED PLAYERS WHO ARE NOT STATIC AND CAN PACE THEMSELVES OUT THROUGH THE DURATION OF THE GAME.WE WILL NEED TO BE CUNNING AND WILY THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE NINETY MINUTES.
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    says: 5 years ago
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    says: 5 years ago
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