Adelaide United’s burgeoning brothers Mohamed and Al Hassan Toure have signed up with the French talent agency which counts former Arsenal great Patrick Vieira and Manchester City’s Benjamin Mendy amongst its clients, as they bid to fashion futures in Europe.
Afp management, whose roster also includes Crystal Palace’s Michy Batshuayi, Wolverhampton’s Willy Boly and RB Leipzig’s Nordi Mukiele, got the nod over a field of 30-plus contenders to manage the careers of two of Australian football’s most exhilarating prospects.
To date, most of the interest has centred on Mohamed, who turns 17 next month, with older sibling Al Hassan building his way back to match sharpness after a long bout with an injury.
Before the Toure clan’s elder statesman, father Amara, came to terms with Afp’s Lyon-based Patrick Touti Mendy, there were already offers on the table from Bayern Munich, Leeds United and RB Salzburg for Mohamed to join their youth academies.
But the prevailing wisdom was to remain in Australia to garner further A-League exposure, rather than the family uprooting to Europe to chaperone Mohamed - as per FIFA regulations - until he turns 18.
The slick, quick attacker has made eight appearances this season, six off the bench, scoring twice.
Olyroo Al Hassan, 20, has featured on three occasions, as he works to recapture the vitality and effervescence which flowed freely in his breakthrough year.
Dad Amara - a former pro in Guinea - explained the strategy ahead for both brothers, with France, Germany and Belgium pinpointed as potential European destinations.
“I feel we’ve got the right people to take the boys in the right direction,” he explained.
“I spoke to a lot of people, there were a lot of phone calls from agents here and abroad, and we took our time.
“I think places like Germany, France and Belgium are countries where they can learn and develop.
“The style of football there could suit them.
“There’s been a lot of interest in Mohamed (in particular) but you have to be careful, think things through and come up with what’s best for the boys.
“We’ll see this season out and just see what happens next.”
Referring to the interest already shown in Mohamed, whose physical power, directness and sheer pace is a defender’s worst nightmare, Amara added: “There have been all kinds of clubs but it’s all down to timing and doing things the right way.”