Boateng blasts SWC prep
Kevin-Prince Boateng (AFP)
Belo Horizonte - Ghana's World Cup preparations were a nightmare of arguments over cash, flooded hotel rooms and long-haul flights in economy class, according to their suspended midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng.
Ghana, quarter-finalists four years ago, crashed out of the tournament in the group stage with Boateng and team mate Sulley Muntari suspended before their final game.
"I would have never thought that a World Cup preparation could be organised that badly, Everything was amateurish," the German-born player told Germany's SportBild magazine.
"The nightmare started on the first day of preparations and lasted until the final day."
Ghana exited the tournament with one point from three games and the country ordered an investigation into the debacle.
Boateng was sanctioned by the Ghanaian football federation for using "vulgar verbal insults" against coach Kwesi Appiah.
"I don't care what they say. I am very relaxed about it because I know I did nothing of the sort," Boateng said.
He said players boycotted training once over unpaid bonuses and accused the federation of failing to spend money from world soccer's governing body FIFA on team preparations.
Ghana president, John Mahama, later stepped in to try to resolve the dispute and around $3 million eventually arrived in Brazil in cash with a convoy of cars bringing the money to the team's headquarters.
Boateng said the cash row, however, was the least of their problems.
"Flying from Miami to Brazil lasted 12 hours. We were squeezed into economy with the legs hurting. It may sound strange for the average citizen but it is demanding for a high-performance athlete," he said.
"Meanwhile, our (federation) president sat in business class with his wife and his two kids."
Boateng said that prior to Ghana's opening group game against the United States he had to change rooms in his hotel because it was flooded.
"I don't say hotel, it was a dump. I had to change rooms because my room resembled a private swimming pool with the ceiling dripping."
Boateng, who played for Ghana at the 2010 tournament but then retired, announced last August he was making himself available for selection when Ghana were already comfortably on course for World Cup qualification.
Asked whether his career with Ghana was now over he said he would not play under current conditions, leaving the door open for a future comeback.
"I do not need to retire. It was them who threw me out," the 27-year-old said. "I love the country and the people but under these conditions it is difficult to continue playing.
"I will go on holiday, return in mid-July to (German club) Schalke 04 and then we will see."