A former Chelsea forward, Islam Feruz, has advises Celtic rising youngster Karamoko Dembele not to make the same mistakes he made as a kid.
Feruz is currently on his fourth loan spell in three years in Belgian club Excel Mouscron. Despite being touted as a potential superstar, Feruz is yet to kick the ball in a Chelsea jersey.
Thirteen year old teenage sensation Dembele caused uproar when he featured for the Under 20 side for Celtic. Being in a similar position, Feruz advised that Dembele tread carefully. Feruz was just 14 years old when he played for Tommy Burns despite being just 14 in 2009. The academy product agreed to move to the top club despite not maturing yet.
“I remember it all just seemed to happen at once and hit me overnight. There was so much publicity. It was very hard to handle,” Feruz admitted to the Daily Mail. He revealed that the pressure got to him, particularly as he couldn’t handle the attention.
“My family and friends were also thrust into the spotlight. It’s hard to cope when you are so young. It’s easy to put your faith in other people and it becomes easy to lose focus on football. People will now want to get involved with him and, no doubt, promise plenty. People will try and sweet talk him,” the player advised.
Feruz is amongst the long list of 38 players the Blues sent out on loan. Matej Delac and Cristian Cuevas make up the three man Chelsea players in Belgium.
Feruz advised that Dembele trust his family and stick sole to the game in order to succeed.
“It’s easy to become distracted and lose sight of the necessary development required on and off the field. The people of Scotland, in every walk of life, must try to protect him,” he added.