Lazio youth who was accused of being 42 quits Italy and is forging career abroad

A former Lazio youth star who went viral after he was accused of being a bloke in his 40s has finally left Italian football following a 10-year stint in the country.

Joseph Minala, who would you believe it is 26-years-old, became an internet sensation in 2014 when an investigation was launched by the Italian FA into claims he was lying about his age.

It was little surprise to those who'd noticed the laughably-wizened look on his somehow teenaged face in his official academy profile photo but the claims were eventually rebuffed, much to bemusement of, well, just about everybody.

READ MORE: The story of Lazio's '17-year-old' wonderkid Joseph Minala who was accused of being 42

"I have read the alleged statements posted on the website in which it says I confessed my real age which was different to what was stated in my [official] documents," Minala said reacting to the allegations at the time.

"They are false statements that have been attributed to me by people who do not know."

Is Joseph Minala telling the truth about his age? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

The midfielder, who was born in Cameroon, spent the next seven seasons on Lazio's books. He made three appearances for the Serie A side but spent the vast majority of the stint out on various loans to teams in Serie B.

In 2020 he had a brief run in the Chinese Super League after joining Qingdao Huanghai on loan before sealing a permanent move to Serie C side Lucchese a year later.

In August last year he was on the move again, this time to fellow Serie C side Oblia, though his contract was cancelled via mutual consent in January.

Where is he now? Well, after finally cutting ties with Italian football, Minala is plying his trade in Latvia having joined top-tier FK Liepaja a few weeks ago.

It might not be the Premier League, but playing Latvia's Virsliga is pretty good going for someone who, if the allegations are true, is in his 50s! Best of luck, Josesph!


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