Former Ghana captain Stephen Appiah says he could have been in jail by now if not for football.
Appiah began his career at local club Hearts of Oak in 1995, at 15 years of age.
The 40-year old shared his experience on how he was influenced by friends to commit crime during his youth days before venturing into football.
Appiah very talented during his active days enjoyed a good career playing for some of the best teams in the world in his over two decades as a professional footballer.
According to him, football changed his life as he was influenced by friends to do some illegal things which could have landed him in jail if he was caught.
“If I followed my friends, I would be in jail right now. I used to sleep in abandoned cars and trucks and in the middle of the night they would wake me up to do bad things. My dream was to become a football player. Football enabled me not to be a gangster”.
Appiah who captained the Black Stars to their first ever World Cup in 2006, played club football from Accra Hearts of Oak to Udinese, Parma, Brescia, Juventus, Fenerbache, Bologna, Cesena and Juventus in over two decades.
He was also part of the historic Ghana squad to the quarter finals of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
Stephen Appiah made 64 appearances and scored 14 goals for the Black Stars.