TORONTO, Canada (Kurdistan24) – A Kurdish footballer was nominated on Thursday for the prestigious European “Golden Boy” award.
Mahmoud Dahoud, born in Amuda, Syrian Kurdistan (Rojava), was listed among 39 other young footballers for the prize.
Twenty-year-old Dahoud plays his club football for German side Borussia Mӧnchengladbach in the Bundesliga.
The footballer’s parents fled the Assad regime in 1996, shortly after he was born, seeking refuge in Germany.
Dahoud signed for Mӧnchengladbach in 2010 at the age of 14. The youngster remained in the club’s academy before making his first-team debut in 2014.
He has since gone on to represent the German under-21 national side four times.
Dahoud’s performances during the 2015-2016 season earned him a spot in the 40-man shortlist for the award.
He made a total of 41 appearances for Mӧnchengladbach in all competitions, scoring five goals.
The Kurdish footballer faces strong competition from talented players including Renato Sanches who won the European Cup with Portugal in the summer.
Other notable players on the list include French star Kingsley Coman and Manchester United talent Marcus Rashford.
The prize was established by Italian sports newspaper Tuttosport in 2003 and now includes 30 other newspapers who participate in the voting.
All nominees listed have to be under the age of 21 and play their football in one of Europe’s top tier leagues.
Players that have won the competition in the past include France’s Paul Pogba (2013), Germany’s Mario Gӧtze (2011), and Barcelona ace Lionel Messi (2005).
The winner will be announced in December.
For a complete list of players nominated, click here.