Cameroon-born Borussia Dortmund and Germany international Youssoufa Moukoko has been caught up in an age scandal.
The Premier League target has reportedly forced Premier League clubs to be on alert as the Borussia Dortmund star shares in the current age fraud scandal that has swept through Cameroonian football.
Youssoufa Moukoko was born in Cameroon’s capital Yaounde before moving to Germany in 2014. He was adopted in the country and is alleged to be 22, rather than 18 which he claims from his documents, according to reports in Germany.
Amidst the age fraud scandal, some Premier League clubs who were indicating interest in signing him, have held on and are reportedly ready to back off from talks.
Newcastle United and Chelsea are the two clubs who hold an interest in the striker but are reportedly holding off as investigations into the recent developments continue.
Youssoufa Moukoko’s alleged age fraud scandal is just a minute fragment of the storied challenge of age fraud that has plagued Cameroonian football.
Last week, Cameroon’s Under-17 side was preparing to play Central African qualifying games in the Nations Cup this month when it was found 21 of the 30-strong squad failed age tests.
Fresh players were quickly drafted in by coach Jean Pierre Fiala but, in a further humiliation, it was discovered that 11 of the additions were also over-age.
Youssoufa Moukoko slipped into the age fraud scandal when reports in Germany emerged that a birth certificate dated year 2000 with the name Yousouffa Mohamadou and attributed to Dortmund striker Moukoko was discovered in 2022.
According to an Austrian news outlet Laola1, Moukoko’s adoptive father had sent the alleged unearthed birth certificate to a journalist.
The player’s adoption emerged in 2022 but now an investigation into age fraud is alleged to have raised doubts about the legitimacy of Moukoko being 18.
The doubts over Moukoko’s age was deepened when another report emerged claiming Moukoko allegedly have partners significantly older than him in his early teenage years.
The German FA has reportedly refused to comment on the incident, saying: ‘We do not comment on any speculation.’
In 2017, they have emphatically denied any illegitimacy towards the player’s documentation, which lists his date of birth as November 20, 2004, saying the body does not entertain any doubts on the correctness of the age of Youssoufa Moukoko.
There is heavy scrutiny on the issue due to alleged incidents of age fraud that have plagued Cameroonian football.
President of Cameroon football governing body Samuel Eto’o was compelled to call for all players selected for their youth side to undergo MRI tests to determine players’ age in an attempt to deal with the rising problem of age fraud in the country.