By Peter Weis@PeterVicey

New SGE prospect Akman impresses on and off pitch at Frankfurt camp: "I'm eagerly awaiting my chance."

Though it remains early yet, young Turkish forward Ali Akman has impressed many on the Eintracht Frankfurt training pitch with his shrewdly slick tricks on the ball. 

The 19-year-old phenom has been waiting some time to get back into a competitive match. Speaking to local reporters during a recent media round, the prospect nevertheless declared himself both flexible and humble when asked about his future. 
In the Bundesrepublik since March, Ali Akman has been training with a team he's contractually been excluded from for some four months. Early termination of his contract with Buraspor, Akman headed to his next footballing destination long before last season was finished.

"I want to leave the past behind," Akman recently told local reporters through an interpreter at a Wednesday presser, "I wish to start a new chapter. Tradition. Fans. Atmosphere. The decision to come to Eintracht Frankfurt was 'one-thousand-percent' the correct one. I've been welcomed with open arms here. Eintracht is like a family."

After scoring 10 goals in 18 rounds of the Turkish second flight during the first half of last season, Akman was courted by many European clubs. Former SGE footballing personnel administrators Fredi Bobic and Bruno Hübner swooped in first, however, and brought him to Rhein-Main for this season shortly after the close of the winter transfer window.

Akman is by no means a traditional target forward. At just 1.72 m (about 5'8'') he's a slight fellow who sneaks into the box with slick dribbling skills. German journalists at the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, the Frankfurter Rundschau, and the Hessenschau have all written about his spirited verve on the ball and most impressive technical skill in observational articles from SGE camp.

Early impressions seem to indicate that the teenager does indeed seem up to the task of forming the next Eintracht cornerstone of young players capable of replacing some of the more developed talent that has departed this summer. The player himself has nevertheless remained modest about his potential.

"I'm a realist, not a dreamer," the 19-year-old said on Wednesday, "I still lack the necessary physicality. I want to work on that. I'm eagerly awaiting my chance to don the 'jersey of the eagle'."

Akman demonstrated remarkable maturity for his age when asked about both the possibility of a loan-out and the need to adjust his play should new head-coach Oliver Glasner wish to integrate him into the team this year.

"I know that it will be difficult to break in here and I can gain valuable match practice in the event of a loan out," Akman noted in reposes to one question.

"I feel more comfortable in the middle than on the wing," he added in response to another, "When I pass, I like to dash forward and lash it home. But I'm also fast and can move out to the wing to provide taller teammates with assists. No problem. My job is to score as many goals as possible, but it's important for me to support the midfielders in the game while at the same time doing justice to my striker role."

Former SGE playing legend Alexander Meier returned to coach the club's youth reserves following his retirement in 2020. The scorer of 119 goals for the club has been working with Akman at the U19s since the youngster arrived in March. Also present at the Wednesday presser, Meier described Akman as a "sly little dog."

As reported in the FAZ, both Meier and Akman eyed one another with knowing smirks after Meier's words were translated by an interpreter at the press conference.

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