AC Milan are taking one of their former players to court with the allegation that he lied to them about his age, telling the club he was nine years younger than he really was.
Yusupha Yaffa, now playing for MSC Duisburg in Germany, is originally from the Gambia and arrived in Italy seeking asylum in 2009.
Yaffa faces the charge of defrauding Milan, one of Serie A’s biggest clubs.
If the allegations are true, Yaffa would have successfully convinced the Italian immigration office that he was 13 on his arrival, when in fact he was 22.
As reported by La Gazetta dello Sport, the player said several times that he had lost his identification documents during the move abroad.
However, Yaffa made remarks online about his education which appeared incongruous with his stated age, and several former schoolmates are said to have disputed the player’s Facebook profile.
Yaffa’s lawyer is trying to have the case moved to a juvenile court, as he argues that his client was underage when the alleged offence took place.
The Scottish Sun, meanwhile, contributed to the ongoing discussions by running a photograph of Yaffa through the popular (but in no way conclusively accurate) online face-recognition tool, called ‘How old do I look?’