Paintsil lauds Odoi’s quality, impact in Black Stars
Former Black Stars right back, John Paintsil, has praised Ghana's right back, Denis Odoi, for his recent exploits for the senior national team.
According to the retired star, Ghanaians could not have asked for a better right back than Odoi, stating that the Club Brugge defender had come to stabilise the back four of the national team.
Speaking to the Graphic Sports, Paintsil showered praises on the 34-year-old defender for bringing his rich experience and leadership to the team's rear.
''He is a good player; I knew him four years ago when he played for Fulham and I must say he is a good player with a good character.
''I am happy we have found a player like that because he is a great guy, a quality player and a good addition to the national team,'' Paintsil noted.
Nicknamed 'Professor' for his maturity and discipline on the field, Odoi was born in Belgium to a Ghanaian father and a Belgian mother. He previously played for the national U-20 and U-21 sides for Belgium as well as one appearance for the senior team in 2012 against Montenegro.
However, in March he made his international debut against Nigeria in the FIFA World Cup playoffs and immediately won the heart of fans as the defender became a key member of Coach Otto Addo's side in the subsequent matches.
Paintsil, who left English side, Fulham, after three successful seasons before Odoi signed for the London side in 2014, said the Odoi's combination with Alexander Djiku, Daniel Amartey and Gideon Mensah had formed an impenetrable solid backline which the country could rely on during international competitions.
He also commended the entire Black Stars team for their performance against Madagascar last week, stating that even though the Malagasies were not tough opponents, the Black Stars are fairly new with players who are now trying to understand one another.
''They are a new team that have been assembled and they are trying to know each other. And also playing against Madagascar, it is Ghana that motivated them because they had nothing to lose but we had so much to lose.
''So, they played with flair while the pressure was on us, so with these players I see a bright future because they are good,'' he stated.
Odoi was rested in Ghana's AFCON qualifier with Central African Republic in Angola yesterday, he will be part of the Ghana team which would play against Japan on Friday in the Kirin Cupat the Misaki Park Stadium.