Former Black Stars defender John Paintsil says the team would have made the finals of the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa.
Ghana painfully exited the competition after a defeat to Uruguay at the quarterfinals.
The Black Stars were just a step away in making history as the first African country to reach the semi-finals had it not being a deliberate “mean-spirited” action from Uruguayan attacker Luis Suarez.
The Barcelona star blocked a ball heading straight into the net with his hands to prevent Ghana a chance into the semis after Asamoah Gyan fluffed the resulting penalty kick.
Paintsil who was an integral member of the Ghana squad insists the team would have went all the way to the finals of the competition.
“We were looking forward to playing the Netherlands because before the tournament, we played them in Holland and we tested them,” Paintsil told Goal, referring to the Black Stars’ 4-1 friendly defeat ahead of the World Cup.
“So we knew their strengths and their weakness, and so for me, we would have gone to the final.
“We knew that we were going straight to the final, and we would have won the cup because at that time the confidence level was very high.”
“We saw it as though no team could beat us after we defeated the United States,” Paintsil added. “We didn’t think that any team could stand us, and we were going all out to perform against Uruguay.
“As for Holland, we knew them inside and out.”
“Spain were a playing-ball team like us,” Paintsil reminisced. “They didn’t play direct balls, they didn’t make silly tackles, they were a decent side and very disciplined, we were also very disciplined.
“We also liked passing the ball around, so that final would have been beautiful.”
Ghana, Cameroon and Senegal remains Africa’s biggest performers at the FIFA World Cup.