'We are not putting any pressure on him' - Dortmund teen sensation Moukoko won't be rushed into first-team

Goal.com

Borussia Dortmund insist they will not rush Youssoufa Moukoko into the first team as they attempt to ease the burden of expectation on the highly-rated teenager.

The 15-year-old is seen one of the most exciting young talents in the game and was included in Goal’s NxGn 2020, which highlights the top 50 wonderkids in football, earlier this season.

He has been a goalscoring sensation at youth level since joining Dortmund from St Pauli at the age of 12, scoring 157 goals in just 97 games across the various age grades.

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He smashed six goals on his debut for the U19 side earlier this season, going on on to score 34 goals in just 20 appearances in the Under-19 Bundesliga.

Moukoko is also already a regular for the Germany U16 side, though his Cameroonian heritage has seen him compared to legendary striker and four-time African Footballer of the Year Samuel Eto'o. The player himself meanwhile is keen to emulate former BVB striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who took the youngster under his wing while he was at Westfalenstadion and remains in contact with him.

Those goalscoring exploits have unsurprisingly raised expectations about a possible senior debut in the near future.

Bundesliga regulations would have previously prevented the youngster from featuring for the Dortmund first-team until the 2021-22 season. However, a recent change in those regulations means he is eligible to play from when he turns 16 on November 20, 2020.

Dortmund, though, are looking to calm the hype surrounding their prestigious talent by playing down talk of an immediate debut.

"The framework conditions for professional appearances by absolute exceptional players of this age has been created, but we are not putting any pressure on him at all," Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc told Bild am Sonntag.

"We do well not to raise expectations of Youssoufa too high."

Head of Dortmund's licensing player department Sebastian Kehl is also keen to stress caution with Moukoko’s development.

"There will always be a decision on a case-by-case basis, which will not only be made on the basis of sporting skills," said the former Germany midfielder.

"Here physical and mental aspects, but also the personality of the player play a major role. We will all handle it very responsibly."

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