A Nigerian footballer is being forced to defend himself after his new club accused him of being 17, yes SEVENTEEN years older than the age on his passport.
Victor Emenayo signed for Azberjain club Shahdagh Qusar FK this summer but after making his debut the club accused him of having lied about his age.
Despite having a passport stating that he is 23-years-old, the club are accusing him of being at least 40-years-old.
Emenayo told New Fanzone Blog: “How can anybody claim or ascertain that I am not 23-years-old merely by my looks. I am not a cheat!”
The club allege that the passport he holds is fake and that he may be older than 40. Sadly this is not the first time such an allegation has been directed at players from Africa.
A situation that is not helped by the fact that 26 under-17 Nigerian players were said to be overage prior to an African Cup of Nations qualifier in 2013.
The tests involve using Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) to scan the wrist plate of players to accurately ascertain their true age, with only players between grade 1 and 5 – of bone fusion in the wrist – of the scan eligible to participate.
Although being widely used by FIFA and UEFA, some reports suggests it is only accurate in players under the age of 17.