Are you really 28? Falcao and 5 of football's age-related controversies
Old controversies never die.
Even though the big news on transfer deadline was Radamel Falcao's dramatic loan move to Manchester United from Monaco, an old rumour about the Colombian being older than his stated age of 28 followed him to Old Trafford.
Such talk forced United to release a statement which read: "We were aware of the rumours but it was never an issue for us."
It's hard to say that the rumours are completely baseless, however. Just take a look at Falcao alongside United's assistant manager Ryan Giggs, who is 40, and judge for yourself.
According to the Mail Online, Falcao, whose passport states was born on Feb 10, 1986, allegedly had his age doctored to make him eligible for the Under-20 World Cup in 2005.
Last year, one of his former schools in Colombia released a document that stated his year of birth as 1984, prompting Falcao to issue a statement to dismiss the claim on social media.
His family got involved too, releasing the striker's birth certificate to the media while his father blamed the difference on a clerical error.
With that, here are five other age-related controversies that have hit football.
ACTUAL AGE: 33
When it comes to age controversies, it certainly doesn't help when your own manager wades in and questions your actual age.
After reuniting with Eto'o at Chelsea following their spell at Inter Milan, Jose Mourinho provoked the wrath of the Cameroonian while lamenting his striker woes at Stamford Bridge last season where he said: "The problem with Chelsea is I lack a scorer. I have Eto'o but he is 32 years old, maybe 35, who knows?"
While the ex-Barcelona hitman, who was also accused of being seven years older than his actual age by an ex-lover, has claimed that there was no more bad blood between himself and the Special One, he devised the above 'old man' celebration after scoring against Tottenham at Stamford Bridge before angrily branding Mourinho a fool before the World Cup.
ACTUAL AGE: 18
Some players, like the baby-faced assassin Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, never seem to grow old.
That's not the case for Joseph Minala, the 18-year-old who looks way older than his actual age.
The Cameroon-born Lazio midfielder was ridiculed on social media over his photographs while the Senegalese media accused him of being 41.
The accusations prompted the Serie A club to release official documentation about Minala's age and threaten legal action, but not before the abuse forced the teen to delete his social media accounts.
Minala, who is now on loan with Serie B club Bari, was eventually cleared by the Italian FA.
ACTUAL AGE: 30
Obafemi Martins and dodgy documentation seem to go hand in hand.
After being the centre of a tussle for his services between Cameroon and Nigeria, the question over the Seattle Super Sounders speed merchant's age surfaced in 2005 when the BBC reported that an Italian journalist found a discrepancy in Martins' birth date on the Nigerian FA's website, which stated that the then-Inter Milan striker was born on May 1, 1978 while his passport reads Oct 28, 1984.
An angry Martins demanded that the erroneous date be taken down while the Serie A giants also wrote to the Nigerian FA to request an immediate correction.
While the FA made the necessary correction, the controversy nearly threatened to derail Martins' move to English Premier League side Newcastle United in 2006.
ACTUAL AGE: 38
Enter Nwankwo Kanu into Google and the second option that appears in the auto-complete field is "nwanakwo kanu age".
In 2010, The Guardian reported that bloggers had questioned the actual ages of Nigeria's star footballers, listing the then-33 Kanu's real age as 42.
And like Eto'o after him, Harry Redknapp, who Portsmouth manager at the time, said that he didn't know the ex-Arsenal star's age and claimed he was 49.
Officially, Kanu turned 38 this year.
BOLIVIA YOG TEAM
ACTUAL AGES (IN 2010): 15
Singaporeans might remember the inaugural Youth Olympic Games football tournament in 2010 for the bronze medal exploits of Kadir Yahaya's plucky Cubs at the Jalan Besar Stadium.
But things threatened to turn into a farce after the tournament when the chairman of the Coaches Association of Santa Cruz in Bolivia claimed that at least five of the South American country's gold medallists were ineligible for the Under-15 tournament.
However, the matter was dismissed by world governing body Fifa who said that the matter was raised too late after the YOG's conclusion.
Finally, here's one bonus entry for someone who plays like he's a lot younger than his age...
ACTUAL AGE: 44
PLAYS LIKE: 29
Is Aleksandar Duric really 44?
At an age when most players have already hung up their boots and are entering into new careers, the powerful ex-Singapore international striker is still tearing up the S.League as a regular starter for Tampines Rovers.
While it seems like Duric could go on and on forever, the evergreen veteran is adamant that he will call time on his long and distinguished career at the end of his current campaign.
Sources: Mail Online, ESPN FC UK, BBC