The ex-Hertha, Tottenham, Portsmouth and AC Milan midfielder has had a nomadic career.
In an interview with FIFA TV, 29-year-old midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng opened up on his time with Tottenham and Portsmouth, as well as his experience with Ghana at the 2010 World Cup and success with AC Milan.
Sometimes referred to simply as ‘Prince’, Boateng’s career is one which has often courted controversy, and despite having all the tools to become a top class player, he has been a mercurial and inconsistent asset for all his former clubs.
During him time in England, Boateng spent a season at Tottenham and a season at Portsmouth, playing a combined total of 51 games in all competitions in that time and reaching an FA Cup final with Portsmouth in 2010.
Boateng told FIFA TV that he had mixed feelings about his two seasons in England, “I’ve got both positive and negative memories of my time in England.”
“The league is superb, however, I wasn’t playing that much, particularly when I was at Tottenham. That was not such a good time for me, but I needed that period to realise once more that football is not just about talent, but also about hard work.”
A bit-part player at Spurs and failing to convert a penalty in the FA Cup final for Portsmouth as they fell to a 1-0 defeat, it is easy to see why Boateng’s memories of England are not entirely positive.
Boateng retired from international football in 2014, but the Berlin-born midfielder won 15 caps for Ghana prior to that, most notably at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
Although Kevin-Prince’s brother Jerome plays for Germany, the older Boateng says “there wasn’t a lot of interest in me on the German side,” which was one of the reasons behind his decision to represent his fathers nation of Ghana.
The ex-Spurs man had never been to Ghana prior to playing for the team, but he had an incredible start to life with the national team. “It was amazing,” Boateng said, “it was in Africa and we had so much support.”
“After getting out of the group it was definitely our aim to reach the semi-finals. I think we deserved to as well, people could see how much passion there was in our game, we had all the fans and the whole continent behind us.”
It wasn’t such a happy experience four years later in Brazil though, as Ghana finished bottom of their group, following defeats to Portugal and the United States. Boateng admits his own performances in Brazil were below par, stating “I couldn’t play at the same level as in 2010 for a thousand reasons.”
Released by AC Milan in the summer, Boateng is now playing his football in the Canary Islands with Las Palmas. The Gran Canaria-based outfit are currently fourth in Liga BBVA, level on points with Barcelona, and Boateng has scored 2 goals in 3 games since his arrival.