His name says it all – "Prince" is royalty. A box-to-box midfielder renowned for his dynamism, aggression, skill and appetite to win, the Schalke player will this evening hope to lead his Ghanaian compatriots to victory over Germany - the country where he was born and where he lives now. It's the second time in four years that Kevin Prince Boateng has taken on the Germans and he's already stoking the fire, describing this Germany side as leaderless.
"Germany has world-class players in every position and that is their main problem," he says. "They have so many good players and need to win the World Cup or at least make it to the final. You need characters when you go into a tournament with so much pressure. I don’t see anyone who could handle this and might be able to carry the team along.” Consider the bar raised.
"Prince" has enjoyed a nomadic career, starting out at Hertha BSC, before securing a move to Bundesliga heavyweights Borussia Dortmund. He had spells at Spurs and Portsmouth in England, then in Italy with Genoa and AC Milan, before returning to Germany to ply his trade with Schalke. Notorious for speaking his mind and totally eschewing all notions of diplomacy, Boateng has danced on a tightrope of controversy in his home country. He's publicly fallen out with Germany midfield icon Michael Ballack and even managed to feud with his brother Jerome, who plays for the German national side. In a game where moments of forceful honesty are increasingly rare, Boateng's unique persona is a breath of fresh air.
"Prince" certainly talks the talk, but he walks the walk as well. In 2011 he came on as a substitute with Milan 3-0 down against Lecce. Boateng's contribution was immediate and decisive – he scored an incredible hattrick to inspire a comeback and lead his team to a 4-3 win. Boateng is also supported by Nike FC, whose motto "without risk there is no victory" perfectly encapsulates Boateng's approach to life on and off the pitch. He'll put his body where others won't and open his mouth when others may stay quiet. See here for more information.
The game against Germany offers "Prince" the chance to settle a score – four years ago Germany narrowly beat Ghana 1-0 and the opportunity to offer some payback is something that'll certainly appeal to KPB. Ghana v Germany sees a man take on the nation he disowned. Game on.