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Interview with Prince Buaben
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Players Abroad of Thursday, 20 August 2009

Source: 90 Minutes Newspaper

Interview with Prince Buaben

You are quite new to most Ghanaian football fans because you didn't feature for any of the local clubs in Ghana. In your own words to 90 Minutes Newspaper, who is Prince Buaben? (With a broad smile) My name is Prince Buaben Abankwah and a Ghanaian but have lived most of my life abroad. I am a professional footballer currently with Dundee United in Scotland and play as a midfielder. I guess people love my style of play because of the way I control the midfield effectively by making surging runs from the middle of the field and scoring goals in the process as well. I guess that would be Prince Buaben for you.Â

What happened to you when you went to Ghana for the summer holidays? Dundee United were worried so much about you getting infected with a virus back home… I don't think it was something serious but I guess the press really blew it out of proportion. It was a normal malaria infection that I contracted during my stay in Ghana because I got sick a week after I returned to Scotland. I am better now as you can see. (Chuckles)Â

You have been in and out of the Black Stars set-up. How frustrating has it been for you? It hasn't been easy at all because every player's dream is to play for his country. The Black Stars midfield has got a lot of talented players but I hope with time, I can state a case for myself. I am doing my best to win a permanent place in the team but it won't be easy since it would demand a lot of hard work. But I am determined to do all the hard work with Dundee United and hopefully people will take notice.

Which departments of the game would you want to improve most? I would love to hit the back of the net frequently. I did start with a goal against Blackburn Rovers in a pre-season friendly and intend to carry on like that. I believe I must seriously work on my goal scoring technique and that would make my game better if not perfect.

Could it be your style of play that is making it difficult to break into the Black Stars starting eleven? I am not sure at all because that has always been my style which earned me a contract with Dundee United. As I said earlier on, a place in the midfield of the team is very competitive and I need to work extra hard. Maybe, there had been something missing; goals! I am working to get more goals to my game and we'll see.Â

The Black Stars are on the verge of qualifying to the World Cup in South Africa next year. How important will it be for you to be part of the team to Mandela land? It would be extremely nice to be part of the final team to South Africa 2010. It is every player's dream to play at the biggest stage and that is surely the platform everyone wants to play for his country.Â

This is your 3rd season with Dundee United. What has been some cherished memories so far at Tannadice? Well, I wouldn't say favourite because it didn't end up well for me and my team-mates though it was one of my best games ever for Dundee. It was the loss of a Cup final to Rangers two years ago. I was awesome in that game but we lost on penalties after the game had ended 2-2. I set all the two goals for my team and we were leading 2-1 and cruising till an unfortunate incident happened. One of my team-mates gave a weak back pass to our goalie and Rangers capitalized and drew level. But that's football for you.

Let's look back at the early part of your career. You were only 9 when you left Ghana for Holland. How has been the journey so far? After I left Ghana, I played for Ajax between the ages of 15 to 18. Then my agent told me he had secured a trial stint with Manchester City in England. I moved to England for the trials but it was a different kind of game being played there. It involved a lot of long balls and a bit of running so it was difficult to adapt having had my football tutorials at the famous Ajax academy. I told my agent that I was 18 at the time so all I needed was for him to take me to the right club to improve on my game. It was then that we had a deal with Dundee United and I have been here since.

What are your personal goals with both club and country?To be one of the best midfield players who control games and helps his side to win games. It would be a dream to play with renowned players and make a huge impact in a game on the world stage. This season, I want to score more goals and if I'm able do that, then I think that would truly make me a force to be reckoned with.

Tell us a little bit about your life off the pitch.... I am a simple guy who spends a lot of time with my family especially with my sisters. I also watch a lot of football because learning the game would help one to improve on his weaknesses. I guess that is me (smiles).

Finally, where do you see yourself in five years time? I really don't think that it will take me 5 years but nevertheless, I see myself playing with a big club in the UEFA Champions League. All that I have to do is to work extra hard and also to be committed to the game. I would take this opportunity to tell my fans to continue to remember me in their prayers and more importantly, believe in me because the sky is the limit.

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