Former Ghana captain Stephen Appiah has revealed the harrowing details of two near-death experiences he had during his illustrious playing career, expressing gratitude for avoiding tragic outcomes.
“I passed out twice. When the first happened [I was] in a plane, and the other one happened when I was running. So, I decided to put water on myself, and I couldn’t tell how long I laid there for two hours or more, but I found myself lying on the floor,” Appiah recounted on Joy News.
Recalling the aftermath of the second episode, he continued, “I woke up and went straight to the room, then I saw that blood clots from some parts of my body, and whenever I bent down to even lace my boots, I was panting heavily. If luck eluded me, I would have been on the pitch one day like how the likes of Marc-Vivien Foé, and the same thing would have happened to me.”
Appiah rose to prominence when he was 14 years old while playing for Ghanaian powerhouse Hearts of Oak. He was instrumental in Ghana’s victory at the FIFA U-17 World Championship in 1995.
Appiah, as captain of the Black Stars, led the team to their historic first-ever World Cup appearance in 2006. He also qualified the team for the South African-hosted tournament in 2010, where Ghana reached the quarterfinals.
He showcased his talents in Italy’s Serie A, representing clubs such as Udinese, Parma, Brescia, Juventus, Cesena, and Bologna during his impressive career spanning across Europe. From 2005 to 2008, he also had three successful years with Turkish giants Fenerbahce.