Stuttgart forward Silas reveals true identity

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Silas, who can play on the wing or up front, scored 11 Bundesliga goals for Stuttgart in 2020-2021, contributing four assists before his season ended by an anterior cruciate ligament injury.

It was his second campaign with the club, Silas having joined from Paris FC ahead of the 2019-2020 season.

On Tuesday, Stuttgart announced its star man from the Democratic Republic of Congo had been playing under a name which was not his own.

Stuttgart said Silas had informed them that a former agent pushed him to change his name and forged false documentation, which also made the player appear a year younger, as his date of birth was switched from October 6, 1998 to October 6, 1999.

"Over the past few years, I was constantly living in fear and was also very worried for my family in Congo," said Silas in a club statement.

"It was a tough step for me to take to make my story public and I would never have had the courage to do so if Stuttgart, my team and VfB had not become like a second home and a safe place to me."

Stuttgart's statement explained how Silas, in 2017, had a trial with Belgian club Anderlecht.

Silas had received a visa to travel to Belgium, under his correct name. Anderlecht, interested in signing the youngster, instructed Silas to return to Congo and return with a new visa in order to sign his contract.

"As this situation unfolded, an agent is said to have put Silas under considerable pressure in Belgium and convinced him that he would not be allowed to return to Europe if he left Belgium and went back to Congo," Stuttgart said in their statement.

"Silas trusted the agent and went to live with him in Paris. He then changed his identity and papers were created for him in the name of Silas Wamangituka [one of the names of his father] and with a date of birth that was exactly one year different from his own."

Silas did not sign for Anderlecht, beginning his career in Europe with French minnows Ales.

Stuttgart sporting director Thomas Hitzlsperger said: "First and foremost, Silas has been the victim of this change of name.

"I have the greatest respect for the fact that at a young age, he has taken the brave step to clarify his situation. We will continue to give him all the help he needs in absolutely every respect."


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