The former Royal Charleroi star sealed a record-breaking move to Napoli last week, and that made him not just Nigeria’s most expensive player, but Africa’s most expensive footballer.
According to Napoli’s president, Aurelio De Laurentis, the club paid €80m (£72.3m) including add-ons to sign Victor Osimhen from Lille.
The fee paid eclipses the amount (£72m) Arsenal paid to sign Nicolas Pepe from Lille also. But while Osimhen is Nigeria and Africa’s most expensive player, he is not the highest-paid Nigerian.
So who is Nigeria’s highest-paid player? Soccernet provides the answer in this article which reveals the top five highest-earning Nigerian footballers.
Alex Iwobi £50k (Everton)
Iwobi was previously Nigeria’s most expensive player when Everton paid £34m to sign him from Arsenal last summer.
The 24-year-old left his boyhood club to team up with the Toffees on deadline day last year. He signed a five-year deal worth £50,000 per-week, according to spotrac per Mirror.
His weekly wage makes him the fifth highest-paid Nigerian star. It has been a disappointing season for Iwobi, however, and that has led to reports that Everton are considering offers for him after just a year.
Kelechi Iheanacho £60k (Leicester City)
Iheanacho joined Leicester City from Manchester City for a reported fee of £25m.
He earns £60,000 per week with his contract set to run till 2022. Iheanacho’s time at the King Power Stadium has been mostly underwhelming with the Nigerian playing as a substitute most of the time.
The former Golden Eaglets star has had just a few outstanding moments at the club, but there are reports that Leicester are ready to sell him this summer.
Victor Moses £75k (Chelsea, on loan at Inter)
The former Super Eagles star is currently on loan at Inter Milan from Chelsea. Moses contract with the Blues is worth £75,000 per week, and it expires at the end of next season.
However, the Blues could sell him before then should the Nerrazzuri pick up the option of signing him permanently.
Wilfred Ndidi £75k (Leicester City)
Given his performances for the club, one could say Ndidi is underpaid at Leicester City.
The Super Eagles star has been an important player for the Foxes since he joined them in January 2017. However he took his game to a higher level at the just concluded season, and that almost helped Leicester City secure a top-four finish.
Brendan Rodgers only missed out on Champions League football on the last day, but it could’ve been different had Ndidi not missed almost a month due to injury.
But despite his importance at the club, Ndidi only earns £75,000 per week, although he’s also the fifth-highest earner at the club.
Leicester are not a high paying club with Jamie Vardy(140), Kasper Schmeichel(130), and James Maddison(100) the only players earning £100,000 and above.
Ndidi is only behind those three players and Jonny Evans. Nonetheless, his performance deserves more, and Leicester could lose the services of their prized asset should a top club offer him more.
Victor Osimhen £96k (Napoli)
Osimhen’s record-breaking move catapults him to second place. Following an impressive season with Lille, Napoli paid a club-record fee to sign the Nigerian star.
Osimhen signed a five-year deal at the club, and he is set to earn £96,000 per week, making him one of the highest earners at Napoli.
Odion Ighalo £130k (Shanghai Shenhua on loan at Man Utd)
Ighalo’s £130,000 per week makes him the highest-earning Nigerian footballer.
But it could have been more than that, had he return to his parent club, Shanghai Shenhua. The former Nigerian striker was earning £300,000 per week at the club but had to take a pay cut when he joined Manchester United on loan in January.
Shanghai then offered the 31-year-old a new two-year deal worth £400,000 per week, but the Nigerian decided to extend his loan deal with United for another seven months.
Nonetheless, according to Skysports, the offer will still be available when his loan deal expires next January, and that would make Ighalo the highest-paid African when he signs.