Napoli’s nightmare: Osimhen’s absence threatens key fixtures

Napoli’s nightmare: Osimhen’s absence threatens key fixtures
Credit: Icon sport

Napoli‘s talismanic striker, Victor Osimhen, could be facing a more extended spell on the sidelines than initially expected, leaving fans and the team concerned about his absence.

The Nigerian sensation suffered a hamstring injury while representing his national team, and there are growing doubts about when he will return to action.

According to Italian reports, it appears increasingly unlikely that Osimhen will be back in action when Napoli faces Atalanta after the November break.

Additionally, his participation in the clash against Real Madrid, just a few days later, is also in doubt.

The situation is becoming even more complicated as the crucial fixtures against Inter on December 3 and Juventus on December 8 loom on the horizon.

Thus, it seems that the Super Eagles‘ star is set to make his return at the beginning of December, at the earliest.

Victor Osimhen's extended injury woes: Napoli faces prolonged absence

Victor Osimhen of SSC Napoli injury during the Serie A
Credit: Icon sport

The setback is a significant blow to Napoli and their fans, who have seen Osimhen in blistering form this season despite the team's relatively slow start.

The 24-year-old striker had already notched six goals in his first eight Serie A appearances before his unfortunate injury occurred.

Osimhen's absence is keenly felt by Napoli's manager, Rudi Garcia, as the young striker has emerged as the team's most potent attacking threat.

His ability to find the back of the net and create opportunities for his teammates has made him an integral part of Napoli's game plan.

The injury occurred during Nigeria's friendly match against Saudi Arabia on October 13th when Osimhen sustained a medium-grade lesion to the biceps femoris in his right thigh.

This injury forced him to sit out Napoli's last two matches against Hellas Verona and Union Berlin.

Osimhen is currently undergoing a comprehensive recovery plan and will undergo a fresh round of medical tests during the November international break.

Unfortunately, the indications so far suggest that his return is unlikely for Napoli's upcoming clash with Atalanta on November 25th.

The club's medical staff and management are understandably cautious about rushing Osimhen's return, given his history of injuries while representing the Nigerian national team.

In November 2020, he suffered a dislocated shoulder that kept him out of action for two months.

He has also faced additional health challenges, including contracting COVID on two separate Christmas visits back home.

Napoli will be eager to see Osimhen make a full recovery and return to the pitch as soon as possible, as his presence is pivotal to their ambitions this season.

In the meantime, the team will have to rely on other players to fill the void left by the injured striker, hoping that they can maintain their performance levels in his absence.

Chelsea's interest in Victor Osimhen might falters amid injury concerns

Victor Osimhen in action for Napoli
Credit: Icon Sport

Chelsea's pursuit of Napoli striker Victor Osimhen might be taking an unexpected turn due to the Nigerian's recent injury woes.

The London club, which had been strongly linked to Osimhen as a potential signing in early 2024, is now reportedly reevaluating their options, with Brentford's sharpshooter Ivan Toney emerging as a possible alternative.

Osimhen's impact in Serie A during the 2022-23 season was nothing short of spectacular, as he netted a remarkable 26 goals in 32 league matches.

His exceptional performances played a pivotal role in guiding Napoli to the Italian top-flight title, making him a coveted asset for several Champions League-caliber clubs.

During the summer transfer window, Osimhen's form had generated substantial interest from clubs competing in Europe's premier club competition.

However, Napoli's president, Aurelio de Laurentiis, was resolute in his stance, refusing to entertain any offers for his star center-forward.

At that time, Osimhen had already entered the final two years of his contract with Napoli.

Now, the situation has evolved, primarily due to Osimhen's current injury concerns.

This has led Chelsea to reassess their pursuit of the Super Eagle, given the uncertainties surrounding his return to full fitness.

Osimhen's recent injury has raised questions about his immediate availability and ability to contribute to a new club.

Additionally, the Nigerian striker's contract with Napoli has been ticking down, with less than two years remaining.

De Laurentiis, who was once adamant about retaining Osimhen, has indicated a shift in his stance.

The Napoli president is now open to the possibility of selling the talented forward, especially in light of Osimhen's hesitance to extend his contract with the reigning Italian champions.

With Chelsea appearing to reconsider their interest in Victor Osimhen, the potential transfer landscape in the coming months could take a different turn.

The emergence of Ivan Toney as a target suggests that Chelsea is actively exploring alternatives, aiming to bolster their attacking options for the future.

As the January transfer window approaches, the football world will keenly watch to see how this intriguing saga unfolds.

This article was most recently revised and updated 7 months ago

Rababe Koussaimi, a 22-year-old journalist, is deeply passionate about the world of sports. She grew up in a footballing environment, supporting both Bayern Munich and Wydad Athletic Club. She began her English journalism career by hosting a podcast for the first English radio station in Morocco. Currently, the Moroccan journalist channels her enthusiasm into writing and conducting extensive research, creating insightful and engaging content for GoalBall Live readers.