Pulse Sports writer Isaac Darko takes a look as to where the historic 21 man squad of the Black Satellites are now.
On 16 October, 2009, Ghana struck a blow for African pride, defeating Brazil in a penalty shootout Friday at the FIFA U-20 World Cup final in Cairo.
After previously losing in the final to Brazil (in 1993) and to Argentina (2001), Ghana finally came good, to become the first African team to win the FIFA U-20 World Cup since the inaugural competition in 1987.
Sunday, 16th October 2016, marks exactly SEVEN years since the Black Satellites made history in the world and Pulse Sports writer Isaac Darko takes a look as to where the historic 21 man squad of Ghana are now.
The order of the players is according to the jersey numbers they donned during the tournament...
1. Daniel Agyei
Having joined Liberty Professionals in 2008, Agyei cemented his position as the Black Satellites' No.1 at the World Youth Championship in 2009.
He earned his first senior call to the Black Stars for the World Cup qualification match against Mali in 2009 and made his Black Stars debut on 18 November 2009 in a friendly match against Angola.
Agyei left Liberty Professionals in 2013 for Free State Stars, before returning to the Dansoman based club ytwo years later. Now contracted to Medema SC through 2017, Agei recently confirmed he is in talks to join Bechem United.
“Yes, I’m in talks with Bechem United over a possible move. My chances of joining them is 70% so I’m looking forward to that, because last season Bechem United had a wonderful season which they won the FA Cup,” Agyei told Pulse.com.gh.
2. Samuel Inkoom
The right-back is among the players who won both the 2009 African Youth Championship in Rwanda and the World Cup in Egypt the same year. His performance at the tournament earned him a place in the senior side, the Black Stars, on 20 November 2008 against Tunisia. He made his debut for the Black Stars in their World Cup qualifier against Benin on 28 March, which Ghana won 1–0.
After his fine display in Egypt, Inkoom joined FC Basel in the Swiss Super League on a three-year deal but the defender made a switch in January 2011 to FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk in the Ukrainian Premier League. After two years in Ukrain, Inkoom was transferred to Bastia in the French Ligue 1 for the rest of the 2013-14 season. The following season, Inkoom again moved on six-month loan, this time to Greek side Platanias in January 2014.
In September 2014, Inkoom signed with D.C. United in Major League Soccer on a free transfer. After three months, the ex-Kotoko defender was traded to Houston Dynamo On June 11, 2015 Inkoom joined Boavista of the Portuguese Primeira Liga on a three-year-deal. On 6 January 2016, Inkoom signed a contract with Turkish-side Antalyaspor.
3. Gladson Awako
Awako started his career with colts club All Stars FC in 2006.Two years later, the versatile midfielder joined then Ghana Premier League side Heart of Lions, before signing for Brekum Chelsea in 2011. Currently with TP Mazembe, Awako has been to fellow DR Congo Super Ligue side CS Don Bosco for the season. The 26-year-old joined the Ravens in 2012 after playing with Berekum Chelsea in the CAF Champions League Group stage. He has played 90 matches (official and friendly) with 13 goals and 26 assists.
4. Jonathan Mensah
He was plying his trade with South African side Free State Stars when he earned a call-up to the Ghana U-20 squad.
Mensah's performances during the 2009 World Youth Championship earned him a call-up to the 2010 World Cup, held in South Africa where he was given the number 8 shirt usually worn by Michael Essien. He is now a first choice centre back for the Black Stars and has formed formidable parnership with John Boye at the heart of defence.
Mensah was snapped up by Udinese after the tournament and moved to their farm club Granada without making it. He then moved to Evian TG IN 2011, making just 49 appearances with the Fench club in his 4 year stay in France. Mensah currenlty plays for Russian club FC Anzhi Makhachkala.
5. Daniel Addo
He was key member of the under-20 team that won the 2009 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Egypt. He received a red card in the final match against Brazil. Formerly of Ukrainian side FC Zorya, the 25-year-old was named in Ghana's squad in June 2012 for the double 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifiers against Lesotho and Zambia but never made it to the bench. He joined Ashgold on a free transfer in January 2016,but couldn't help the miners retain the Ghana Premier League title last season.He left Ashgold after seven months to sign for Northen Cypriot side, Gençlik Gücü Sport Club.
6. David Addy
Addy started his senior club career with Ghanaian side Inter Allies, and was subsequently transferred to Danish Superliga club Randers FC in 2008. During his time with Randers FC, he made a total of 23 appearances, which included three appearances for the club in the UEFA Europa League qualifiers.
The Ghanaian international has played for Portuguese giants FC Porto and was later loaned to Academica de Coimbra in Portugal and Panetolikos in Greece. The ex-Porto player helped Vitoria SC to win the domestic silverware, Taca de Portugal in 2013 and also helped them qualify for the 2013-2014 UEFA Europa League where he made successful appearances against Real Betis, Olympic Lyon and Rijeka.
David Nii Addy has currently signed for Indian club Delhi Dynamos FC after his two-year long stint with the Belgian Pro club Waasland Beveren.
7. Abeiku Quansah
The speedy winger moved from Windy Professionals F.C. to OGC Nice in 2008. Quansah made his debut in the Coupe de la Ligue against US Creteil on 11 November 2008 and his second game in the Coupe de France on 3 January 2009 against Arras Football. After three year stint with the French club, Quansah signed for Arsenal Kyiv of Ukraine, making just 13 appearances. In October 2013, Quansah terminated his contract with Arsenal Kyiv due to financial constraints. He is currently in Egypt playing for El Gouna, a cllub he joined in 2014.
8. Emmanuel Agyemang Badu
The man who ended Africa's long, painful 22 years without a trophy, with his winning penalty for the Black Satellites to secure the World Youth title in 2009. That kick made Ghana the first African nation to win the FIFA U-20 World Cup
He is still at the top of his game and is a key figure for Udinese and the national team. In 2010, Badu was selected for his first Africa Cup of Nations as the Black Stars finished runners-up to Egypt, and went on to appear in the 2012 and 2013 editions of the tournament, with the team twice recording fourth-placed finishes.
During the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations, in a group match between Ghana and Guinea, Badu flipped up a teammate's pass from just outside the penalty area and launched a mid-air volley to score a goal that was later nominated for the 2012 FIFA Puskás Award. After missing the 2010 FIFA World Cup through injury, Badu was selected in Ghana's squad for the 2014 tournament.
The Udinese midfielder has made over 60 apearances for Ghana.
9. Opoku Agyemang
Opoku began his career with AshantiGold Soccer Academy in 2005 and was promoted to the senior team a year later. He was then transferred to Tunisian side Club Sportif Sfaxien as free agent, in January 2007. On December 2008, Opoku signed for Al Sadd of the Qatar Stars League. Three years later, he joined another Qatari club Al-Ahli on a three-month loan deal from Al Sadd.
The speedster has battled injuries since playing at the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations and had to spent nine months in the treatment room. The injury setback ruled him out of action of the 2010 FIFA World Cup finals in South Africa.
10. Andre Ayew
Ayew had always been destined for success. Having led the nation to success in previous years, he was then among the standout players in the Black Stars' team at the 2010 World Cup.
The ex-Marseille star man was named in Ghana's squad for the 2014 World Cup as well, and in the team's opening match, he scored an 82nd minute equalising goal against the United States in an eventual 2–1 defeat. He then scored the Black Stars' first goal in a 2–2 draw with Germany in their second group match.
After featuring for Swansea City for one season, Ayew signed for West Ham United for a club record fee of £20.5 million on a three-year contract in August 2016, with the option of an extra two years. Ayew's debut game for West Ham, on 15 August 2016, against Chelsea, lasted 35 minutes before he was substituted after sustaining a thigh injury.
11. Latif Salifu
Salifu is one of the biggest talents to emerge from Liberty Professionals. The striker scored 12 goals in 16 games in his first season and was a nominee for Player of the Year in 2008. He later switched camps to sign for Brekum Chelsea but fail to make his mark with the Blues. Salifu, who reportedly signed for Hearts of Oak in 2015, termnated his contract with the Phobians a month after signing for Hearts of Oak in September 2015. Three months later, Salifu left Ghana to seal a two-year deal with Ivorien champions, FC Tanda.
12. Ghandi Kassenu
Kassenu also began his career with Liberty Professionals and was loaned out to Swedish club BK Häcken in 2008. In 2011, he joined Moldovan club Sheriff Tiraspol for their 2011–12 Divizia Naţională season. He has had stints with BK Hacken of Sweden as well as Al Merreikh of Sudan. In June this year, Kassenu signed a short-term deal with Hearts of Oak for the second round of the just ended Ghana Premier League season.
13. Rabiu Mohammed
Rabiu is out for six months after undergoing surgery on his knee. Six months out also means he may struggle to hit form in time for Ghana's likely charge to an Afcon title in Gabon next January. Rabiu had picked up the injury in Krasnodar’s league game against Rostov. On 16 August 2016, Rabiu ended his three year stay with Krasnodar after signing a 3 year contract with Russian side Anzhi Makhachkala.
Rabiu won his first senior cap for Ghana by coming on as second half substitute in the international friendly with Brazil in September 2011. He featured for Ghana at the 2012 and 2013 African Cup of Natios respectively.
14. Daniel Opare
Bursting through the Real Madrid ranks as a teenager, Opare was tipped to become a great player for both club and ciountry.
He was even recognized by World Soccer Magazine as one of the 50 Most Exciting Teenagers on the Planet. He received rave reviews for using his incredible footspeed and precision crossing to great effect for the Ghana national U-17 team at the 2007 U-17 World Cup.
However, injuries stalled his career and in 7 seasons he has only played 90 senior games for Real Madrid, Standard Liege, FC Porto and Besiktas.
Opare, who was just signed during the just shut summer transfer window, is looking to play more games ofr Augsburg this season.
15. Philip Boampong
Boampong started his career at Suhum Maxbees in 2005 and later joined Wa All Stars in 2008. After one year with the Wa based club, he signed for Berekum Arsenal in January 2009. In August 2012, Boampong joined Saudi Arabian side Al-Shoalah on a season-long loan. He returned to Ghana in 2013 to sign for Hearts of Oak but was was sacked by the Phobians in January 2016. Boampong is now a player of Sekondi Hasaacas.
16. Robert Dabuo
Dabuo was a member of the Ghana national under-17 football team in 2007 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Korea Republic. On 19 August 2008, Dabuo was called up to the Satellites, and was part of the Ghana national under-20 football team that won the 2009 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Egypt. Currentlly with Ashgold, the shot stopper has written to the management of the club to abrogate the remaining years on his contract. The former Wa All Stars goalie has lost to his first choice position to Black Stars shot stopper Fatau Dauda since the beginning of the second half of the season.
17. John Benson
Benson began his career with possitive youth and latter join Shaggy Fc and also join Ajax Football Academy in [Obuasi] before transferred in 2006 to Goldfields academy, then in February 2006 signed from ASPIRE Academy for Sports Excellence and has after the 2009 FIFA U-20 World Cup signed for the Qatar Stars League side Al Ahli.
18. Ransford Osei
Ransfrod Osei was once described by FIFA.com as "an opportunistic goal machine" with superb pace and movement. He was also recognized by World Soccer Magazine as one of the 50 Most Exciting Teenagers on the Planet in their November 2007 Issue, following his exploits at the 2007 U-17 World Cup where he won the Adidas Silver Shoe as the competitions second highest goalscorer with 8 goals, coming second by one goal to Macauley Chrisantus of Nigeria.
However, bad luck and injuries meant Osei featured eleven times for his club side Maccabi Haifa between 2008 and 2011, hampering his chances with the Black Stars. He also had unsuccesful stints with Bloemfontein Celtic and Asante Kotoko, before returning to South African to sign for Polokwane City in 2015, t his time in Limpopo was marred by injury and he managed just three substitute appearances during his time with Polokwane.
Osei has currently signed for Finnish side Rovaniemen Palloseura (RoPS).
19. Bright Addae
Addae began his senior career with Wa All Stars In November 2009, it was announced that he would be moving to Italian club Parma in the summer of 2010, after signing a four-year contract. In January 2011, he was loaned to Spanish club Terrassa until the end of the 2010–11 season. He has since featured for Terrassa, Crotone, Gorica, Gubbio and currently plying his trade with Serie B side Ascoli.
Addae made three appearances at the 2009 FIFA U-20 World Cup, and made his senior international debut for Ghana in 2010.
20. Dominic Adiyiah
Ghana's prolific marksman Dominic Adiyiah? With 8 goals in 7 matches, hisp performances in the tournament were certainly deserving of all the praise and superlatives thorwn his way.
Sadly, Adiyiah represents a cautionary tale in the perils of putting youh level hi=ype above sensible decisions. He was the next bug star of African football, many thought. It ddn't work out that way.
Despite glimpses of his talent, he has never really built on the promise he showed in his early days at Heart of Lions and the national U.20 team.
Adiyiah was awarded the Golden Shoe for the topscorer with 8 goals in 7 games and was also named the Most Valuable Player of the 2009 U-20 World Championship. After impressing in the U-20 World Cup, Adiyiah joined AC Milan but failed to play a single game for the Serie A giants.
Clearly a talented player, but has consistently flattered to deceive at Milan, and failed to look like the finished article. He currently plays for Thailand club Nakhon Ratchasima in the Thai Premier League.
21. Joseph Addo
After his return from the 2009 FIFA U-20 World Cup, Addobecame the starting goalie for his club Sekondi Hasaacas. Addo left the club following its relegation to the Division One to sign for Heart of Lions in start for the 2011–12. He then moved to Asante Kotoko in 2014, helping the Porcupine Warriors to win the league and Cup double that year. His position at Kotoko was deemed untenable following the arrival of Ernest Sowah, Felix Annan and the presence Eric Ofori Antwi.
Aduana Stars then moved quickly to snap up the former Heart of Lions glovesman before the start of last season. Addo signed a two year deal with the Dormaa-based club.