Ex-Black Stars forward Laryea Kingston has revealed stowing away in car boots and cabs to escape high levels of money demands from friends and relatives amid his active playing days.
The former Hearts of Oak player portrayed the horrible experience Ghanaian players experience when they return home for vacations, with companions and relatives trooping in to request for financial support.
Kingston is known as an uncompromising and dedicated player by fellow professionals, Kingston’s resolved style has occasionally caused him issues, most prominently while representing Ghana at the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations, when he was sent off amid Ghana’s 1–0 triumph over Senegal following a fight with Habib Beye.
Both Kingston and Habib Beye subsequently got unprecedented 4-match bans, which resultantly ruled Kingston out of contention for the Ghana squad for 2006 World Cup. Kingston comes back to prominence for the Black Stars in February 2007 scoring in their 4–1 triumph over Nigeria in London.
Laryea, who was born in Bukom, a suburb of Accra, concedes that the level of destitution in his community demands his help but includes the pressure turns out to be intense to the point that he once in a while needed to escape by hiding in a car boot.
“Sometimes when I need to fly back to my club, I don’t know who will tell my friends and other people in my community. The will rush to my house in their numbers and occupy the whole street waiting for me to give them money before I depart,” Laryea revealed on the Football Legends Night Show on GhOne TV.
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“The demand and pressure become so intense that sometimes I have to go in my car boot or disguise myself and leave with a taxi,” he explained.
He noted that similar pressure compelled many of his colleagues to end up spending more as philanthropists without saving for their future.
The experienced Ghana star noted that the current generation of players are confronted with similar challenges which leave them with nothing to save for the future.
“The same pressure is happening now to the current generation of footballers who are struggling to meet the high demand from friends and relatives.”