Osimhen scores first Champions League goal this season

Osimhen scores first Champions League goal this season
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Victor Osimhen and his Napoli side walked a tightrope as they took on SC Braga in their final UEFA Champions League group game, needing to avoid defeat to qualify for the next round.

Osimhen, who became the new African Footballer of the Year in a ceremony in Marrakech, Morocco, on Monday night, was at the forefront of the Partenopei attack as they sailed through.

The Super Eagles striker has endured a goal drought, which continued since his return from injury, but he broke the spell as he scored Napoli's second goal.

The Nigerian forward celebrated his CAF award with a goal and qualification to the next round of the UEFA Champions League behind table-topping Real Madrid.

Napoli won their third Champions League game this season with a 2-0 victory over SC Braga.

Osimhen scores first Champions League goal this season

Osimhen played only 68 minutes against Braga
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SC Braga started the game like a house on fire, as they peppered the Partenopei defence with several attacks, but the home side dealt with it effectively.

Osimhen had little to work with, but his presence caused jitters for the visitors.

In the 10th minute, Braga conceded an own goal as they tried to prevent a pass to Osimhen inside the box.

The African Player of the Year was running into good positions, waiting for supply that refused to come.

It seemed that his teammates were intentionally refusing to pass the ball to him.

With the first half approaching its end, Osimhen finally got on the score sheet with his first Champions League goal this season. The Nigerian received a late pass from Natan, and with some improvisation, he put it beyond the goalkeeper.

Napoli play Osimhen for half of the second period

Osimhen worried about the lack of supply
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Osimhen cut the figure of a frustrated lad following the lack of supply in the first half.

The situation did not improve much in the second half as he kept chasing scraps fed to him. The former Wolfsburg and Lille striker cut a forlorn figure, suggesting he might be considering a departure from Naples.

As the second half wore on, Napoli kept probing, with Braga looking short of ideas, as they found the Partenopei defence a hard nut to crack.

Walter Mazzarri made his first change in the 60th minute, with Matteo Politano replaced by Eljif Elmas and Piotr Zielinskialso, making way for Jens-Lys Cajuste.

Eight minutes later, Osimhen was substituted, with Giacomo Raspadori taking his place.

Osimhen can take confidence from his first goal in the Champions League this season as Napoli beat SC Braga 2-0 to sail into the round of 16.

Napoli:
Alex Meret, Giovanni Di Lorenzo, Amir Rrahmani, Juan Jesus, Natan, Andre Zambo Anguissa, Stanislav Lobotka, Piotr Zielinski, Matteo Politano, Victor Osimhen, Khvicha Kvaratskhelia

Subs:
Nikita Contini, Pierluigi Gollini, Leo Ostigard, Alessandro Zanoli, Eljif Elmas, Jens-Lys Cajuste, Jesper Lindstrom, Gianluca Gaetano, Giovanni Simeone, Alessio Zerbin, Giacomo Raspadori

SC Braga:
Matheus Magalhaes, Victor Gomez, Serdar Saatci, Jose Fonte, Cristian Borja, Joao Moutinho, Rodrigo Zalazar Martinez, Ricardo Horta, Bruma, Simon Banza, Pizzi

Subs:
Tiago Sa, Lukas Hornicek, Paulo Oliveira, Josafat Mendes, Adrian Marin, Al Musrati, Andre Horta, Roger Fernandes, Vitor Carvalho, Rony Lopes, Andre Castro

 

This article was most recently revised and updated 2 months ago

Chooka Izuegbuna is a Sports Journalist with 20 years of experience in print, TV and Radio. He has worked with some of the top media houses in Nigeria, including NTA Network, Channels TV, TVC, Silverbird TV and MITV. Chooka broke his sports reporting teeth with The Game Football Weekly in 2003 as a cartoonist and reporter.