Osimhen To Miss Napoli, Barcelona Clash In UCL


Napoli forward, Victor Osimhen is a huge doubt for Wednesday’s UEFA Champions League quarterfinals first leg against Barcelona at Diego Armando Maradona Stadium.

The 25-year-old was not listed for Saturday’s 1-1 home draw against Genoa following his return from Africa Cup of Nations duty with Nigeria, who finished second at the continental football showpiece in Cote d’Ivoire after losing 2-1 to the host nation in the final.

Despite the final being last Sunday, Osimhen did not return to Naples until late Thursday evening after missing a flight, and his first training session was on Friday.

Napoli manager Walter Mazzarri warns the former Lille striker might not be ready to face Barcelona either, as reports emerge of Napoli tension over his fitness.

“We can only hope he can be ready, but his presence is not certain. According to him and the medical staff, he’s nowhere near fully fit; he has some muscular issues,” said Mazzarri, as quoted by Sky Sport Italia, DAZN, and Il Mattino.

“After the Africa Cup of Nations, it would’ve been silly to risk him here and risk losing him for another couple of months. He will train tomorrow, and we hope to have him ready for Barcelona,” he added.

According to reports, it was Osimhen who asked to be excluded from Saturday’s game against Genoa, but the Nigerian was videoed relentlessly rooting for his teammates in the stands as they came from behind to force the visitors to a draw.

According to Football Italia, Sky Sport Italia pundit and journalist Paolo Condò criticised Napoli for not providing Osimhen with a private jet to bring him back to Italy several days ago