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Karim Adeyemi: The German-Nigerian Star Shining in the Bundesliga

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Karim Adeyemi is one of the fast-rising young players in Europe. Part of his journey goes back to Austrian club RB Salzburg which produced notable players like Erling Haaland and Sadio Mane.

Adeyemi has attracted the attention of bigger clubs but decided to play in Germany to develop his game. In this article, we tell you everything you need to know about his football journey.

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Karim Adeyemi’s Early Career

Karim Adeyemi playing for RB Salzsburg. Source: Wikimedia licensed by CC-BY-SA-4.0

Karim Adeyemi was born on 18 January 2002 in Munich to a Nigerian father Abbey Adeyemi and a Romanian mother Alexandra Adeyemi. Unfortunately, the player faced racism as a child but he said these experiences made him stronger.

The German-born Nigerian started playing football at a young age and represented TSV Forsteinreid. In 2010 at eight years old, Adeyemi joined the FC Bayern München campus. He hoped to walk in the footsteps of his idol Arjen Robben.

However, things didn’t work out for him at Bayern and he left for a smaller team in the Munich area SpVgg Unterhaching in 2012.

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Gaining Visibility

At Unterhaching, Adeyemi’s performances sparked interest from clubs like Chelsea but he turned down those offers. Later, Austrian club RB Salzburg wanted to sign him and he moved to the club in 2018. His decision was based on the team’s demonstrating its interest in his future and not just his current form.

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RB Salzburg

At Salzburg, Adeyemi was loaned to Liefering where he scored 15 goals and created 12 assists in the lower league. The center-forward and midfielder won Germany’s prestigious Fritz-Walter Medal, an accolade other high-profile players like Timo Weiner and Mario Götze won at the same age. 

He returned to Salzburg and became one of its most prolific players. In 2019/20, the forward netted one goal and four assists. The following year, he raised his tally to nine goals and 12 assists. In what was his last season with Salzburg, Adeyemi shook the net 23 times in 44 games.  

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Borussia Dortmund

In 2022, the young German player signed for Borussia Dortmund to replace Erling Haaland who left to join Manchester City. Dortmund is known for developing players into world-class talent and his decision to join the team makes sense.

Already, he’s doing well in the team. In his debut match, Adeyemi provided an assist to Marco Reus. He has gone from strength to strength, becoming one of the main players in the team. In the 2023/24 season, he scored three goals and one assist in 21 appearances. His stats equal those of players like Jadon Sancho and Donyell Malen.

He signed a five-year contract with the team.

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International Career

Karim Adeyemi has played in the German youth teams, Under 16s, under 17s and under 21, with whom he won the European Championship. In 2022, he received his first call-up for the senior side and debuted against Armenia. 

To date, Adeyemi has four caps for the Die Mannschaft. He was part of the German squad at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar but didn’t play in any games. 

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Can Karim Adeyemi Play for Nigeria?

The youngster has expressed his affection for his father’s country of birth. He visited Nigeria early in the year to oversee his foundation’s work. The player has made senior appearances for Germany although in qualifying matches.

According to FIFA eligibility criteria, a player can switch countries before playing in more than three competitive matches so the door remains wide open for him.

Karim Adeyemi is steadily growing and improving his craft at Borussia Dortmund. If he continues performing at the level he’s performing now, he’s bound to reignite interest in major clubs around Europe.  

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