Ex-Ghana defender right back John Painstil has revealed that starting his European football career in Israel helped his development as a footballer.
John Painstil joined Maccabi Tel Avv in 2002 from Ghanaian side Berekum Chelsea, before later joining rivals Hapoel Tel Aviv.
The 39-year old spent four years in Israel before a dream move to England, where he joined the Hammers.
"If you have the talent, you are good to go regardless any challenge. My beginning in Israel really helped me a lot in my development. This experience helped me adapt simply in the English Premier League. It is the best league in the world," he told Light FM.
Painstil has hanged his boots after a successful football career which saw him represent Ghana at multiple Nations Cup and two FIFA World Cups.
He played 89 times for the Black Stars of Ghana, and was a member of the team at the FIFA World Cups in 2006 and 2010.
He also played for the West Ham, Fulham and Leicester in England in a glittering football career.