Fourteen year old Cameroon born Germany junior international Youssoufa Moukoko has been dubbed African Messi. Likened to Messi but he celebrates like Ronaldo, is that an indication that he will someday have combined qualities of the two greatest players in the world?
The Borussia Dortmund Starlet has a €10million (£9m) Nike deal, 392,000 Instagram followers, six goals on his debut and three hat-tricks in seven games this season, the wonderkid dubbed ‘the African Messi’ boasts the kind of numbers that the Barcelona maestro would be proud of.
It’s all the more remarkable because Borussia Dortmund striker Youssoufa Moukoko is only 14.
This month he became the youngest player to appear in the UEFA Youth League when he lined up for Dortmund’s Under-19 side against Barcelona aged 14 years, 9 months and 28 days. The German side won 2-1.
For once his name didn’t appear on the scoresheet but his appearance naturally caught the eye of Spanish giants Real Madrid, who are keeping tabs as the academy star seeks to follow the pathway to the first-team taken by the likes of Mario Gotze, Marco Reus and Nuri Sahin.
‘My goal is to become a professional with Dortmund, win the Champions League with Borussia and win the Ballon d’Or,’ the striker told SportBild.
Moukoko has until the start of the 2021/22 season to break into the first-team and break that record by a couple of months.
Youth Chief Lars Ricken Ricken has naturally attempted to play down the hype surrounding the teenager.
‘We are staying calm for now and don’t forget that when we judge his performances,’ Ricken said. ‘Just because he’s scored a lot of goals at youth level does not guarantee he will become a professional.’
But if he continues his phenomenal goal record is appears only a matter of time.
Moukoko, who joined Dortmund from Bundesliga 2 side St Pauli, first caught the eye as a 12-year-old by scoring twice for the U17s against local rivals Schalke as BVB recovered from a three-goal deficit to draw 4-4.