Cameroon-born German Youssoufa Moukoko, who plays for the Borussia Dortmund youth side, has been having a remarkable season for club and country. The wunderkid is only 12-years-old and has already caught the eye of many scouts for his brilliant displays in front of goal, prompting questions over his age.
Moukoko, who only turns 13 in November, scored both goals in Germany Under-16’s 2-1 win away to Austria in Hippach on Wednesday, even though he is at least two years younger than most of his team-mates. Moukoko made his international debut for Germany’s juniors in a 3-1 win over Austria on Monday, then scored the winning goals in a second international between the nations.
He has already made waves in German youth football this season by scoring 13 goals in five games for Borussia Dortmund’s Under-17 team in the junior Bundesliga. Under German Football Association (DFB) rules, he is not allowed to play in the Bundesliga until he turns 17.
As for question marks about his age, Moukoko’s father clarified that he has documents to prove his son’s case. “Straight after the birth, I registered him at the German embassy in Yaounde,” said his father, Joseph. “We have a German birth certificate.”
The German FA and his club are aware of the doubts, but insist all the paperwork is in order. “The DFB has already had a number of intensive discussions with Borussia Dortmund at various levels,” said a DFB statement. “At the DFB’s request for careful consideration of the facts, those responsible at Borussia Dortmund always point to the authenticity of the papers and documents, which are also known by DFB. There is therefore no doubt about the correctness of the age of the player. In this matter, the DFB relies on the details of the home club of the player.”
Germany’s biggest selling daily newspaper, Bild, dedicated a spread on the precocious talent in Sunday’s sports supplement under the headline: “Is this wunderkind really only 12 years old?” Bild said his 66-year-old father and his mother, 28, still live in Hamburg while Moukoko lodges with a family in Dortmund.