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The Wonderkid Replacing Bayern Munich's Sadio Mane

Australia's A-League is not renowned for producing elite talent; quite the opposite. Yet, the stratospheric rise of Nestory Irankunda with Adelaide United has proven otherwise. The seventeen-year-old has exploded onto the scene, regularly showing off his signature tumbling backflipping celebration, and is attracting interest from European giants Bayern Munich. Read on for everything you need to know.



Early Life and Playing Career


The youngster was born in Kigoma, Tanzania, a lake port near the Tanzanian borders with Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo. After moving to Australia and gaining citizenship, Irankunda can represent Australia, Tanzania, and Burundi internationally.


Representing Australia for the under-17 side, Irankunda has eight goals in three appearances and looks set to break into the senior side very soon. Though not definite, the decision may have been made.


At just seventeen, Irankunda has racked up thirty-three appearances with ten goal involvements. Such a wealth of top-flight experience is rare for a player his age and will prove vital to his continuing development.



Playing Style


Irankunda has played on both the right and left flanks for Adelaide, though twenty-seven of his thirty-one appearances have seen him play as a right winger.


His greatest strengths are his ability to stand up and beat defenders, favouring body feints and sharp changes in direction to gain the extra yard. Coupled with physical strength and a strong natural ability to shield the ball, Irankunda is a dangerous matchup in any one-on-one attacking scenario.



Being able to beat defenders easily allows the attacker to consistently deliver dangerous balls across the six-yard line, forcing opposing defenders and goalkeepers to make decisions. While this is yet to be reflected by his two assists, stepping into a higher level would likely change this.


Technically, the Australian has a vicious strike in his locker and has proven his ability to finish from set pieces. A particular example comes to mind, as the winger enters the top right corner of the penalty area and quickly unleashes a rising strike across the goal that nestles itself into the top left stanchion.


Does Irankunda Fit Bayern Munich?


For me, yes. With Sadio Mane and Kingsley Coman both looking restless, the German juggernauts look set to have space for an influx of attacking talent. Mane's move from Liverpool has produced mixed results but looks sure to come to an end this summer. While the youngster needs to improve, his style of play is not a million miles away from the Senegalese attacker and could easily be moulded to form a replacement.



The Bavarians have been utilising inside wingers since the Ribery-Robben era, followed by Sane-Gnabry. Though the prospect has a while to go, Irankunda could be an integral part of the new generation in Munich.

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