The major European leagues have ended. Several Ghanaian players were exceptional during the term as they helped their clubs to league titles whilst others also secured European spots for their teams.
Goal Ghana’s Edmund Okai Gyimah takes a look at Ghana's best eleven in Europe for the 2012-2013 season.
The former Nania FC goalkeeper has lots of experience in Europe dating back to a decade which has seen him play for clubs such as Wolfsburg, Real Betis, Tenerife and a host of others before joining Guadalajara last summer. He is known for his good reflexes and ability to organise his backline well. He is the first-choice goalkeeper for his club in the Spanish Second Division.
The "Bull" was used in different positions by Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho during his loan spell, but Essien was efficient at right-back. The 30-year-old was fantastic at the right side of lateral defense with his surging runs to join the attack and ability to track back to defend. One of his best games for Madrid was against Galatasaray at the Santiago Bernabeu when he operated as a right-back.
Boye has been one of Ghana’s most consistent defenders in Europe where he is a pillar at the back for Stade Rennes in the Ligue 1. He is well noted for his tenacity and unyielding nature at the back. The former Kpando Heart of Lions player has made 22 appearances for Rennes this season scoring twice from the back. He can also play at right-back and won the man-of-the-match in the game with PSG where he nullified Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
Akaminko joined Eskişehirspor from Maniaspor during the summer transfer period and has so far guided the rear very well for the club. The Ghanaian has played 17 times for his club in the Turkish league scoring twice (one in the league and Turkish Cup). He was also named man-of-the-match in his club’s game with Galatasaray where he put the brakes on Didier Drogba.
Though not a dominant figure in the setup of the Black Stars, Addy has always proved his mettle at club level. The 22-year-old moved to Vitoria Guimaraes from FC Porto last summer and has been one of the key men at the back. Addy was instrumental in the team’s qualification to the finals of the Portuguese Cup which has effectively granted them the opportunity to play in the Europa Cup next season. He has played 20 times for Vitoria Guimaraes this season scoring two goals.
He is one of Ghana's most consistent performers in Europe. Rabiu who plies his trade with Ligue 1 side Evian Thonon Galliard is always the first on the team sheet of the Stade des Prince outfit. He has put up great performances for his club helping them reach the French cup finals after they eliminated giants Paris Saint Germain. The Ghanaian might leave Evian as big guns like Marseille, Lyon and English side Everton are after his signature.
Yussif Chibsah Raman
Chibsah is one of the main reasons why Sassuolo will be playing in the Italian Serie A next season. The youngster was phenomenal at the heart of midfield for the Stadio Albero Braglia pulling the strings from the start of the season. The 20-year-old, partially owned by giants Juventus and Parma, has made 28 appearances at Sassuolo this season scoring twice. A box-to-box midfielder, Chibsah is an embodiment of skills, strength, vision and good passes, he conquered the midfield in all the games he played and got all the applause in their game against Livorno in which they played with nine men to beat their rivals
In just his first season with Espanyol, Wakaso has been one of their best players and has won praises from the fans and the Spanish media with sublime performances. The Ghanaian has lived up to expectation. This season Wakaso has made 23 appearances for the Barcelona-based club in the league scoring thrice and giving six assists whilst he has been used in almost all the midfield positions.
The playmaker who plays as a wing back for his club played major role in the Bianconerri’s retention of the Serie A title and also their quarter-finals finish in the Uefa Champions League. Asamoah joined the Turin club in a co-ownership deal with Juventus paying nine million Euros for 50%. He scored in his debut in the Supercoppa Italiana against Napoli and also set up Stephan Lichtsteiner’s goal against Parma in his debut. The impressive midfielder has gone on to become one of the key players for Juventus playing 27 games and scoring twice in the league.
The Ghanaian winger has netted nine league goals for the Stade Velodrome club though his season has been marred by injuries which have seen him on the sidelines so many times. He has also won the Marseille player of the month twice and was nominated for the Marc Vivien Foe award due to his sterling performance. The son of Ghana legend Abedi Ayew Pele is undoubtedly the livewire of the Ligue 1 outfit.
The young forward who is also on loan at Sassuolo from Juventus was instrumental in the club’s qualification to Serie A. Boakye-Yiadom, who is on a second successful loan deal with the Modena club, netted eleven goals in 23 league games. He was always on hand when the going gets tough for Sassuolo as he secured some important wins for them through his goals.
Though Conte has hinted that he will like to have his player back, the likes of Spanish club Elce, as well as Serie A clubs Sampdoria are on his heels whilst Sassuolo also wants to keep him for one more season.