When Osimhen arrived at Napoli from Lille for a club and African record of 81.3m euros last summer, a lot was expected from the Nigerian.
The 22-year-old arrived with a burgeoning reputation after scoring 18 goals in all competitions for Lille in what was his first and only season in France.
It was expected that he would carry the form into the Italian top-flight. Osimhen had a decent start with two goals in his first seven league games for the Neapolitans.
However, just as he was beginning to settle in, a shoulder injury on international duty ruled him out for three months.
It got worse for him as he tested positive for coronavirus after recovering from the injury. The coronavirus ruled him out for another two weeks.
Osimhen did return to action at the end of January, but by then, the pressure was already building. Nonetheless, he had the backing of Napoli’s coach then, Gennaro Gattuso.
The Super Eagles star repaid his coach’s trust with eight goals to finish the season with ten league goals in 24 games.
But sadly, it wasn’t enough to save Gattuso. Then comes Luciano Spalletti, who has been chosen to replace the former Italy star.
Spalletti’s arrival is expected to take Osimhen’s game to a higher level, and judging from the form the Nigerian has shown so far, it’s already bearing fruits.
The former Zenith St. Petersburg coach is known for turning his strikers into goalscoring monsters, having worked his magic with Francesco Totti, Aleksandr Kerzhakov, Edin Dzeko and Mauro Icardi.
The ex Inter-Milan boss is now working the same magic with Super Eagles star’s golden boy. In three pre-season games, Osimhen already has seven goals.
He scored four against Anaunia before scoring the winner against Pro Vercelli. But it was his brace against Bayern Munich that sent out a real statement of intent.
It’s not just the goals that show how Osimhen is already benefitting from Spalletti’s arrival. The Super Eagles star is now more involved in Napoli’s all-around play.
Under Gattuso, there was a feeling that Napoli players were not playing for the striker. In fact, most of his goals from last season were more of his individual brilliance.
However, with Spalletti’s arrival, Osimhen is more involved. In the game against Vercelli, the Nigerian could have had like two assists to his name.
Aside from that, the team now plays for him, and it showed in the two goals he scored against Bayern. While it’s only pre-season, his form should be a worry to the rest of Serie A.
He’s expected to take his game to a higher level under Spalletti, and from the games so far, it’s already bearing fruit.
It can only get better.