Emmanuel Boateng: I'm not in to audition for Gyan's Ghana shirt

The Levante sensation speaks on his first-time involvement with the Black Stars ahead of matches against Japan and Iceland

With Ghana still in the business of finding a long-term successor for ageing all-time top scorer Asamoah Gyan, there was a lot of excitement when Emmanuel Boateng's name featured in the Black Stars latest squad for upcoming friendlies. 

The 22-year-old Levante attacker and Bayern Munich’s Kwasi Okyere Wriedt were among the debutants in coach James Kwesi Appiah’s 21-man squad for games against Japan and Iceland on May 30 and June 7 respectively. 

The cheers of Boateng's call-up were premised on an outstanding showing against giants Barcelona on the penultimate matchday of the Spanish La Liga when he delivered an incredible hat-trick. 

"Unlike what people say, I don't think this is like playing to see who replaces Gyan," Boateng told KweseESPN.

"He is still in active business and a striker many of us really look up to.

"I think it benefits the young players coming in that he is still around the national team.

"Then there is Jordan Ayew, who has had a really good season at club level, and the likes of Raphael Dwamena and Richard Boakye Yiadom all around.

"I understand I just won’t walk in[to the first team], but there is so much to learn from these players and so much that we can do together as a team, which I want to focus on."

Although his first time with the Black Stars, Boateng is not new to wearing the Ghana shirt. 

In 2015, the forward caught attention at the Under-20 World Cup when he registered the only goal of a triumph over Panama in the group stage. 

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"To get a national-team call-up is a really special feeling," the former Moreirense man, who also netted against Real Madrid in the just-ended season, added. 

"Everything has happened a bit fast this season but now I hope I can play for the Black Stars for a long time by taking my chance in these two friendly games."