BBC Sport world-cup-2010


John Mensah

  • Position: Defender
  • Squad number: 5
  • Date of birth: 29 November, 1982 (27 years old)
  • Height: 5'10" (178cm)

Tournament totals

Games played Shots on target | off target
4 John Mensah
0|2 John Mensah
0 As substitute
31|44 Total Ghana
20 Most shots on target Diego Forlan
5 Total Ghana
12 Most shots off target Asamoah Gyan, Cristiano Ronaldo, Wesley Sneijder
Goals Assists
0 John Mensah
0 John Mensah
5 Total Ghana
2 Total Ghana
6 Best Diego Forlan
Fouls by | on Cards yellow | red
7|4 John Mensah
1|0 John Mensah
71|47 Total Ghana
11|0 Total Ghana
20 Most fouls by Mark Van Bommel
25 Most fouls on Andres Iniesta

Ghana games played

  1. Serbia 0-1 Ghana
    Sunday, 13 June Match report
  2. Ghana 1-1 Australia
    Saturday, 19 June Match report
  3. Ghana 0-1 Germany
    Wednesday, 23 June Match report
  4. United States 1-2 Ghana
    Saturday, 26 June Match report
  5. Uruguay 1-1 Ghana
    Friday, 2 July Match report

Player profile

From the Black Stars to the Black Cats, John Mensah’s career has seen him play for a remarkable nine clubs in nine years. He has spent this season on loan at Sunderland from Lyon but has been hampered by persistent calf and back injuries and managed just 14 league starts.

However, Sunderland boss Steve Bruce and chairman Niall Quinn are keen for him to stay but negotiations with Lyon look set to be tricky and he may sign another loan deal rather than making a permanent move. He scored his first Sunderland goal against Man City in December.

After starting his career in Accra, he took the well-trodden path by Ghanaian players to Serie A by signing for Bologna as a teenager. They loaned him to Swiss club Bellinzona before he returned to Italy and played for Genoa, Chievo Verona, Modena and Cremonese. His breakthrough on the European stage came at French side Stade Rennes and he was named Best Defender in Ligue 1 by France Football magazine. This led to an €8.4m move to Lyon in the summer of 2008, but he started only 11 matches in a season plagued by injury.

He was part of the team that reached the 2001 Fifa World Youth Championship and scored the goal that knocked the Brazil out of the tournament. At the end of Ghana’s defeat to Brazil at the 2006 World Cup he lifted his strip up to reveal a T-shirt underneath which said ‘John Mensah – Rock of Gibraltar’, a nickname he picked up due to his impressive and imposing physique.

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