Former Udinese striker, Antonio Di Natale, has expressed his admiration for Napoli’s forward, Victor Osimhen, ahead of the two teams’ Serie A faceoff at the Dacia Arena on Thursday, Soccernet.ng reports.
In an interview with Gazzetta dello Sport, Di Natale compared Osimhen to his former teammate, Vincenzo Iaquinta, who was part of the Italy squad that won the 2006 World Cup.
Di Natale, who played for Udinese from 2004 to 2016, scoring 191 goals in 385 appearances, was particularly impressed by Osimhen’s attacking prowess, citing his ability to run into space as a key similarity between the Nigerian and Iaquinta.
“I like Osimhen so much for the way he attacks the space,” Di Natale said.
“He’s a complete striker. Looking at him, and thinking back to the past, he reminds me of Vincenzo Iaquinta in the way he attacks the space. Osimhen always annoys the opposing centre-backs.”
Osimhen has been in fine form for Napoli this season, scoring 21 goals in 26 Serie A appearances, making him the league’s leading scorer. His performances have helped Napoli challenge for the title, and a draw against Udinese on Thursday would be enough to secure their first Scudetto in 33 years.
For Di Natale, the match has added significance, as he was born in Naples and played for Udinese for many years, with Luciano Spalletti as one of his coaches. He is excited to see Osimhen play in person and believes the striker has the potential to reach the same heights as Iaquinta did in his career.
Iaquinta, who also played for Udinese before joining Juventus, scored 89 goals in 269 Serie A appearances and was an integral part of the Italy squad that won the 2006 World Cup. He scored a goal in the Azzurri’s debut of that edition, a 2-0 win over Ghana.