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Sports News of Tuesday, 28 July 2020


When Kevin-Prince Boateng lost control of his life at Tottenham

Kevin-Prince Boateng Kevin-Prince Boateng

Kevin-Prince Boateng once made it clear what went wrong in his one and a half years at Tottenham Hotspur: "I hardly played and had no drive to train in the morning. I was caught up in lethargy. Nightclubs and parties were more important than football" he told the English newspaper in 2010 when he was playing at Portsmouth FC.

There he had prevailed in the Premier League and became a Ghanaian international. His first engagement in England , that of Tottenham, turned into a nightmare.

"I went to the Spurs at the age of 20 and immediately got a huge damper," looked back Boateng, who switched from Hertha BSC to London in summer 2007 for just under eight million euros . "After a lot of preparation, Martin Jol (Tottenham coach at the time) told me that while I was a good guy and was under contract, he didn't want me at all."

Kevin-Prince Boateng: "I was all alone in this huge city"That must have been sitting. Especially since he didn't really want to go to England, as he later revealed: "I would have preferred Spain , but at Hertha people advised me to go to England." The FC Sevilla was then also him off, said Boateng in 2019 in an interview with Goal and DAZN .

But it became Tottenham - and it became bitter. "I was all alone in this huge city of London, it was depressing," he said. He did not get a move in the first few weeks and was only allowed to play in the Premier League for the first time on matchday 12 of the 2007/08 season. In the middle of the season he had a decent phase, but from the beginning of March to the end of the season nothing worked again.

Boateng set wrong priorities, as he admits. "It was important to me to wear the coolest clothes and to be known in the night clubs. I was completely on the wrong track." The lack of playing time frustrated him more and more, just as the sweet life overwhelmed him with the financial opportunities of a football professional.

Kevin-Prince Boateng bought three cars in one day "Once I bought three cars in one day," says the 33-year-old midfielder. Boateng bought a Lamborghini, a Hummer and a Cadillac classic car, "for a high six-figure sum. I also have 2000 baseball caps from that time, 20 leather jackets and 160 pairs of shoes. My frustration was expressed in massive attacks of shopping addiction. "

Because he had no one on site to talk to, who could have slowed him down, Boateng couldn't get out of that downward spiral. "I would have needed someone to advise me on sporting and financial matters, to wake me up, but there was nobody there," he says. Sometimes he spent "huge sums of money" on a celebration night. "But that didn't make me happy. I was a broken man who lived in his own world."

Although he still had 13 Premier League appearances in his first season with the Spurs, he only had a meager 14 minutes in the first half of his second season. He pulled the emergency brake and was loaned to Borussia Dortmund in early 2009 . And there, at BVB, he gets the curve, has in Jürgen Klopp the sponsor that he has always lacked at Tottenham. "He knows exactly what he has to say so that you can go out on the pitch and die for him. He's ahead of everyone else," said Boateng to Goal and DAZN about today's Liverpool coach. "I would even go to China for Klopp ."

Kevin-Prince Boateng learned from Tottenham: "Just shit for a year, but ..."In summer 2009 he had to go back to Tottenham, but then went to Portsmouth and came to AC Milan after Genoa in 2010 after the successful World Cup with Ghana , where he played with Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Ronaldinho, Andrea Pirlo and Robinho. He became an Italian champion and later played for Schalke, Frankfurt, Barcelona,Florence and Besiktas .

Boateng has had a great career. One that also included the dark time at Tottenham back then. "If I hadn't gone to Tottenham, I wouldn't have been the player I am today," he said. "I only made shit there for a year, but in retrospect it helped me. I learned what it means to be a professional football player and how to eat properly. I realized that you should stay at home when everyone is move around the houses at night. "