2006 World Cup: Our defeat to Italy motivated us to beat Czech, USA - John Paintsil

John Paintsil 1 Former Ghana defender John Paintsil

Fri, 12 Jun 2020 Source: happyghana.com

Former Ghana defender John Paintsil has opened up on playing his first game against Italy at the 2006 FIFA World Cup.

It was Ghana’s debut appearance at the FIFA World Cup which was hosted by Germany.

The Black Stars were paired alongside Italy, the Czech Republic and USA in Group E of that tournament.

According to Paintsil, who was also making his debut, the defeat to Italy in the opening game was a wake-up call for the whole team which urged them on to beat Czech and USA in their subsequent matches.

“We lost to the team that eventually won the World Cup. That game really helped us to prepare against the Czech Republic. The defeat was a wake-up call for us ahead of the Czech game.

We should have won more than the goals we scored in our second game”, he told Odiasempa Kwame Oware on Wamputu Sports on Happy 98.9FM.

He added that advice from some senior players in the team also helped them to focus on their subsequent matches

“We had a leader Stephen Appiah, who was encouraging us and talking to us. Appiah had played in Europe, Matthew Amoah, John Mensah and co so they kept talking to us to motivate us ahead of the game. So we were focused on playing the tournament not concentrating on who we were going to face.

Ghana qualified to the Round of 16 stage in that tournament where they eventually lost to Brazil by 3-0 to exit the competition.

Source: happyghana.com