Ghana international Kwadwo Asamoah has revealed some surprising tactical information about the Black Stars ahead of the Africa Cup of Nations set to begin on the 21st of June. The former Juventus star currently plays for Inter Milan as a defender but can be deployed in the middle of the pitch as a midfielder.
The 30-year-old star disclosed that he will feature mainly in the midfield for Ghana at the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) which starts on Friday. The former Udinese man had caused a lot of discussion amongst pundits and fans of the Black Stars. Asamoah had been on sabbatical from national team duty since Ghana were knocked out of the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.
Asamoah, who made his breakthrough as a midfielder with Italian club Udinese and Ghana at the 2010 Africa Cup and Fifa World Cup, has played at left-back for most of the last six years. “I’m a player that can play in so many roles on the field of play: I can be a midfielder, I can also support the attack, I can play at left-back and also left forward,” he told TV3.
“I spoke with the [Ghana] coach [James Appiah] and told him he knows the qualities that I have and what I can do for this national team. So we shared an idea and I told him he knows perfectly when I come to the midfield, I excel more than playing from the back because African football is totally different from [that of] Europe.”
“In Europe, the way we play depends on how the coach wants us to play but with African football, it’s more physical and there is no space, so with me playing from left-back, I will not find it easy,” Asamoah continued. The Ghanaian international played at the left side of the defence for former Chelsea manager, Antonio Conte when the two of them were at Juventus. Both of them are set to be reunited at Inter Milan after the AFCON.
“So with what people know and what I know and what everyone knows, when it comes to the national team, I am always good when I play from the midfield so he [ James Appiah ] also accepted and said ‘I will try and play you from the midfield’ but in any situation or any case when we need help from the left-back I’m always there,” Asamoah continued.
With the tactical information revealed, he is likely to partner Atletico Madrid star Thomas Partey in the midfield for Ghana. The Black Stars have not won the AFCON since 1982 and their chase for a fifth title would begin on Tuesday 25th of June against the Squirrels of Benin. The Black Stars have been drawn in Group F where they will face Cameroon, Benin and Guinea-Bissau.