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Nigerian singer Adekunle Gold and French footballer Kylian Mbappe were never teammates

IN SHORT: Several Facebook posts claim that Adekunle Gold, a popular music star in Nigeria, was a teammate of France football star, Kylian Mbappe. But there is no evidence to support this claim.

“So Adekunle Gold was Mbappe's former teammate,” reads a Facebook post dated 3 November 2023.

Adekunle Almoruf Kosoko, popularly known as Adekunle Gold, is a Nigerian singer and songwriter. Kylian Mbappe is the captain of the French national football team and plays for French football club Paris Saint-Germain.

The post includes a photo of young boys in green and white football kit. One of the boys in the front row is circled in red and one in the back row is circled in blue.

The post has attracted over 5,000 comments and has been reposted over 700 times.

The same claim can be found here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here.

But are Mbappe and Kosoko former football teammates? We looked into it.


Clues from the photo

A reverse image search of the image led us to a Latvian bookselling website Polaris Gramatnica. The photo circulating on Facebook is from a book about Mbappe and is reproduced on the website. It shows the French player circled in red in the front row of the team photo. 

The word “AS Bondy” can be seen on the players’ kit. Mbappe joined the team AS Bondy, which is based in France, at the age of six. 

Mbappe was born in Paris, France, in 1998. He grew up in Paris and his parents are of Algerian and Cameroonian descent.  

Kosoko was born in 1987 in Lagos, Nigeria. Kosoko was 17 when Mbappe first enrolled at AS Bondy's football academy.

The 11-year gap makes it highly unlikely that the two would be in the same team as young players. The boy in the photo with Mbappe is clearly not 11 years his senior.

We searched for Kosoko’s name on the list of AS Bondy’s previous players, but came up empty

Kosoko never a professional or academy footballer

On 10 February 2022, English football club Manchester United interviewed Kosoko about his love for the club. There is nothing in the article about Kosoko ever being a professional footballer or academy player.

In another interview with news agency Punch, the music star said that he played football and table tennis as a child. 

“I played football with so much passion but at some point, I chose a career path that I loved more, which is music,” he said. He also made no mention of playing for AS Bondy.

There is no proof to support the claim that Mbappe and Kosoko were ever teammates at AS Bondy – or any other club.

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