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Biography

Personal

Born in Nkawkaw, Ghana, on 5 September 1975, George left his home country and moved to Holland when he was a young child to be with his father and to further his education. A talented schoolboy player, he was spotted by Rotterdam’s Sparta club and asked to join the youth team. His father thought his studies more important and refused to give permission, but George continued to shine out with his football skills at school. As a consequence, he was approached again aged 15, by Feyenoord, and his father agreed to let George sign a contract as long as he continued his studies.

Football

  • Personal information
  • George Boateng
  • 5 September 1975
  • Nkawkaw, Ghana
  • 5 ft 7 in (1.70 m)
  • Midfielder
  • Football Honours
  • Runner Up
  • Winner
  • Runner Up
Senior career Statistics

  • Club information
  • Nottingham Forest
  • 6
2011/12 English League Championship *
Games Goals Assists Shots
5 1 0 1

* as of January 17, 2012

After playing 70 matches for the Dutch giants, George Boateng was bought by Gordon Strachan for Coventry City for £220,000 in 1998. He was carefully managed by Strachan and after playing in a variety of positions, was kept as a defensive midfielder, for which he showed considerable talent. In 1998, Coventry finished eleventh in the Premier League thanks to his combined efforts with talented strikers Dion Dublin and Darren Huckerby.

He thrilled fans by scoring two memorable goals in a 4–1 win over Aston Villa at Villa Park in February 1999, which triumphantly ended Coventry’s 63-year wait for a League win at their home ground.

The next season, Aston Villa paid a £4.5 million transfer fee for Boateng: a massive enhancement of his worth to the League. In the following years, the agile central midfielder played 131 matches for Villa that included an FA Cup final defeat against Chelsea in 2000. Due to a disagreement with then manager Graham Taylor in the 2001/2 season, Boateng transferred to Middlesbrough for £5 million.

Still as a solid midfield defender, Boateng made his debut with the club on the first day of the 2002/3 season in an away match with Southampton. Though the game was scoreless, it was clear that Boateng had played a strong part in keeping the goals out of his own net and Middlesbrough acknowledged him as a lynchpin of their defence. Suffering an ankle injury in the summer of 2003, he was nevertheless fit for the start of the 2003/4 season and was able to play his part in helping Middlesbrough lift the League Cup for the first time.

He scored his first goal for Middlesbrough in a 4–0 win at Blackburn Rovers in October 2004. Sadly, Boateng had broken a toe and required two months’ recuperation, during which period Middlesbrough dropped from fourth down to ninth in the League. Now an established player in the English League, Boateng was voted ‘the player most missed due to injury in the 2004–05 season’ in a poll on the official Boro website. Happily, he recovered in time to help his team obtain the results they needed to qualify for the UEFA Cup and he started in the game for Middlesbrough in the 2006 UEFA Cup Final.

In June 2006, Boateng signed a new three-year contract with Middlesbrough and was promoted to club captain in the July, replacing Gareth Southgate, himself promoted to manager. Greater glory beckoned… in March 2007, George scored in an FA Cup tie against the mighty Manchester United, then top of the League. This was his first goal in the tournament since 1999, when he had scored for his old club Coventry.

However, in early 2008, Gareth Southgate decided to demote Boateng, to give him a chance to ‘concentrate on his game’ and gave the captaincy to Emanuel Pogatetz. Naturally, this affected Boateng and he decided to make the move to Hull City in mid-2008. In early 2010, he scored his first career goal for the new team in a 2–1 win over Manchester City, which was the club’s first win after a three-month dry spell. However, Boateng’s contract ended with Hull in 2010, following their relegation from the Premier League.

Many clubs then expressed an interest in the talented midfielder, including Celtic and West Bromwich Albion, but George Boateng decided to leave English football and he signed a two-year deal with Greece’s Skoda Xanthi. But he was sadly missed by the British supporters, who were delighted to see him return to Nottingham Forest in the summer of 2011 for a one-year deal. In a sensational first goal for the club, Boateng grabbed Forest a point against Leicester City in the 94th minute of the match. He remains a valued player at Nottingham Forest and is still performing at the highest level.

International Career

Boateng played for the Netherlands, making his international début for them in 2001. He earned four caps with Oranje.