By: Razak Musah Mohammed
Anderlecht defender Cheikhou Kouyaté says AC Milan Kevin-Prince Boateng ‘wanted to hurt him intentionally’ after neutralizing the Ghanaian in their Champions’ League clash on Tuesday.
Assigned as the watchdog to neutralize Boateng in the midfield, the Senegal defender executed his mission with fervor as they played out to a goalless draw at the San Siro.
He closely policed the Ghanaian offensive midfielder, whose frustrations were made clear through his output in the game.
There were fears that Kouyate could miss Tuesday’s important game after he picked up an ankle injury in Senegal’s 4-2 lose to Ivory Coast in the African Cup qualifiers.
But the Anderlecht star had to swallow more than 11 painkillers to be able to take a starting place in the Belgian side’s starting team.
Very effective in his duels with Boateng, Kouyaté suspects his direct opponent of having intentionally want to injure him (Kouyate).
“Boateng stepped on my ankle,” Kouyate said when asked about his duels with Boateng.
“Usually it’s me who tackles others but this time he tackled me. I got injured but I didn’t want to stop playing.
“Boateng stepped on my ankle and I think he did it on purpose.
Kouyate, the Senegalese international, defended his decision to continue in the game despite the injury he suffered after his clash with Boateng.
“He knew that I was already injured but I wanted to finish the game,” said Kouyate.
“I had to bet on my class to continue the game and I took a risk.
“It was still a Champions League match, huh. I was not playing Champions League every year! For me, it was even the first time in playing in the competition. I wanted to play at all costs.”