Nicknamed the Tornado, Ghana’s inspirational captain was a precocious talent and started playing for Ghanaian powerhouses Hearts of Oak at the age of just 15.
He made his full international debut on his 16th birthday and was the youngest member of the Ghana team that won the World Under-17 Championship in 1995. Soon after that he moved to Italy and began playing for Udinese and Parma. A bout of viral meningitis affected his performances, so he was sent out on loan to Brescia before transferring to Juventus. He won the title in his first full season at Juve, but they were stripped of the crown and promptly relegated.
After a fresh start at Fenerbahce, his move to Turkey in 2005 quickly turned sour when he was unhappy with the treatment he was given while out injured. A war of words ensued, resulting in Appiah leaving the club a year before his contract was due to end.
He remained without a club after trials at Tottenham and Rubin Kazan failed over concerns about a persistent knee injury. He finally signed a deal with Bologna in November 2009 but did not make his first appearance for the club until May. Despite going almost two years without making a competitive appearance at club level, he continued to play for Ghana and is a two-time Ghanaian Player of the Year.
He is passionate about clothing and owns his own line called SteApp. His women’s range is called Vanessa and his men’s range Larry. He is also active with the charity Unicef to promote education in Africa. He interests include table tennis, reggae and R’n’B, with R Kelly his favourite artist.
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