According to the Times (subscription required), an Italian judicial source believes that big-money Manchester United recruit Amad Diallo Traore could be one of many footballers trafficked into Italy.
United pre-agreed the signing of the exciting 18-year-old on Deadline Day of the extended summer transfer window, with Fabrizio Romano stating that the deal is for an initial €25m and could rise to €40m.
Amad Diallo’s transfer was seemingly delayed as the Ivory Coast born ace waited on an official Italian passport, but it’s recently been found that this was also tied to a trafficking investigation.
The Times report that five Africans were arrested last year for their involvement in a trafficking ring that brought five footballers, including Amad Diallo, over to Italy from the Ivory Coast using fake documents.
Amad Diallo dropped Traore from his name amid the investigation, with the winger fined €48,000 by the Italian FA for the ordeal last year, before being handed Italian citizenship.
Prosecutors in Parma suspect that Africans with Italian residency were used to legally request that their children joined them in Italy, with this possible due to the use of fake documents.
Here’s what the Italian source told the Times:
“We don’t know for sure, but Diallo’s real parents could still be in Africa, he was a minor so was never under investigation by the magistrates.”
“His documents are now genuine and Amad Diallo is his real name.”
The investigation into Amad was sparked by another alleged trafficking ring, which saw Italian agent Giovanni Damiano Drago accused of bringing in five African children with forged papers:
“During that investigation, we received information which led us to the Diallo ring, this could be a common practice in Italy.”
The Times shared some details from the paperwork of the Italian Football Federation’s (FIGC) investigation last week.
Those documents alleged that Marina Edwidge Carine Teher an Hamed Mamadou Traore were not Amad’s real parents, whilst adding that Sassuolo and Empoli’s Hamed Junior Traore is not actually the Manchester United talent’s brother.
It’s added that Amad Diallo’s supposed is also an employee of Atalanta, the club that the attacker’s joined United from, though she has not been accused of any wrongdoing.
It’s worrying to see that this trafficking may well be ‘common practice’ in Italy, it would be sickening to learn that promising talents were being taken away from their families to embark on their careers.
Amad and Co. have of course won the opportunity to provide for their families by playing in Europe, but it’s a shame that the only way for this dream to be achieved is via unlawful, immoral and illegal means.
Amad Diallo burst into the Atalanta team last season, making three substitute appearances and scoring on his debut.
The prospect has only seen 35 minutes of senior action this term, coming following his Deadline Day transfer to United, via two substitute outings for the Italian outfit.
Diallo has been left to feature for United’s Under-23s since officially completing a move to Manchester in January, with the wonderkid contributing three goals and three assists in just two appearances.