Young Germany star Moukoko staying with Borussia Dortmund

DORTMUND, Germany (AP) — Young Germany star Youssoufa Moukoko is staying with Borussia Dortmund.

The 18-year-old Moukoko extended his contract with the Bundesliga club on Saturday through June 2026.

Moukoko’s contract was to expire at the end of the season and there was speculation he might leave but Dortmund asked the forward for a decision one way or another before Sunday’s league game at Augsburg.

Evidently, it was a yes to what Dortmund sporting director Sebastian Kehl described as a “very attractive offer.”

Moukoko became the youngest player to represent Germany at the men’s World Cup in November and is Dortmund’s top scorer in the Bundesliga with six goals in 14 games. His performances earned him the World Cup callup, though he made only one late appearance as the Germans were knocked out early.

“Youssoufa is an exceptional player who we developed ourselves and in whom we still see huge development potential,” Kehl said on Saturday of the player who joined at age 11 from Hamburg club St. Pauli in 2016. “I’m happy that we were able to convince Youssoufa that he has the best prospects at Dortmund and that his path is far from over here.”

Born in Cameroon and raised in Germany, Moukoko’s prolific record of scoring in youth leagues prompted the Bundesliga to rewrite its rulebook so he could make his senior debut at 16, rather than the old minimum age of 17.

He duly became the youngest player ever to play in the Bundesliga one day after his 16th birthday in November 2020, and less than three weeks later, he became the youngest player to appear in the Champions League.

“Of course, I was honored by the interest of other clubs, but ultimately it’s a decision of the heart,” Moukoko was quoted as saying. “The fans have always supported me and I want to give something back to them and the club.”

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