Photos of some players from the Democratic Republic of Congo’s Under-16 team who recently won a Caf school tournament caused a stir on social media.
The players looked bigger and older than they said and discussions about age fraud in African youth tournaments took center stage.
Now Safa president Danny Jordaan, who was at the tournament in DRC, has urged Caf and FIFA to investigate the issue of age fraud.
“The boys’ competition is something the Café and the FIFA World Football Board should look at,” said Jordaan as quoted by Sunday World.
“Many people who attended the tournament were not convinced that some of the players who entered were under 16.
“Age cheating is an issue, but there isn’t much we can do because all players provide official documents from their government. There were some big boys there. Caf will have to investigate this matter,” said Jordaan.
He suggested that youth-level age fraud could be the reason African countries are not doing well at the senior level on the global stage.
“This is a constant problem of African football and we need to address the problem.
“This is anti-development because if you’re playing under 16 and you’re supposed to be playing in a much higher age bracket…it can’t be a real benchmark for teams on the pitch, especially in school competitions.”