Ousman Manneh Scores Werder Bremen Winner After Leaving Gambia as Refugee

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistOctober 17, 2016

BREMEN, GERMANY - AUGUST 07:  A general overview of the Weserstadion prior to the pre-season friendly match between Werder Bremen and FC Chelsea at Weserstadion on August 7, 2016 in Bremen, Germany.  (Photo by Boris Streubel/Getty Images)
Boris Streubel/Getty Images

Werder Bremen striker Ousman Manneh hailed "the greatest moment of my life" after he netted the winning goal in a 2-1 Bundesliga victory over Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday, just two years on from his move to Germany from Gambia as a refugee.

Per BBC Sport, Manneh, 19, left his family in 2014 as a 17-year-old and fled to Germany, where he started to play football at a refugee centre.

His 59th-minute winner against Leverkusen was his first goal for Werder—coming in his fourth appearance—and he questioned after the match whether it had really happened, per BBC Sport:

I can't believe this. 

Is this real or am I dreaming? This is the greatest moment of my life.

It's hard to describe my feelings.

I've been so proud to be the first Gambian to play four Bundesliga games, and now I'm proud to be the first one to score.

Opta confirmed the historic nature of Manneh's strike:

OptaFranz @OptaFranz

1 - Ousman Manneh's goal for @werderbremen_en is the 1st BL goal scored by a player from Gambia in the Bundesliga. Historical. #svwb04

Meanwhile, the Bundesliga provided further comments from the young forward:

Bundesliga English @Bundesliga_EN

He arrived in 🇩🇪 two years ago as a refugee - yesterday he scored a game-winning ⚽️ for @werderbremen_en! #SVWB04 https://t.co/2BNA82S62n

BBC Sport's report added that fifth-tier side Blumenthaler gave Manneh his first opportunity in German football, and his 15 goals in 11 games for the club's youth team attracted Werder's interest, and they signed him to their reserves in March 2015.

His goal on Saturday earned Bremen only their second win from seven in the new league season, and they now sit 13th in the table on seven points.