Victor Osimhen won the 2023 CAF Player of the Year award, sweeping Liverpool’s Mohammed Salah and Paris Saint-Germain’s Achraf Hakimi to the side.
Former Zamalek winger, Emmanuel Amuneke, has revealed how his former club side passed up the opportunity to sign Victor Osimhen back in 2015, Soccernet.ng reports.
Amuneke, 53, in his playing days, donned the colours of the Egyptian side, Zamalek, before moving to Sporting Lisbon and Barcelona later in his career.
After his retirement, he took over coaching duties with the Nigerian U-17 football team and led the team to a FIFA U-17 World Cup victory in Chile, in 2015.
In that tournament, Victor Osimhen won the Golden Boot, scoring ten goals, alongside carting away the silver ball as the second-best player of the tournament.
While coaching him, Amuneke suggested the name of Victor Osimhen to Zamalek’s board, but ultimately the club overlooked the player, who moved to Europe, to join Mario Gomez’s VFL Wolfsburg.
In an interview with MBC Masr, Amuneke revealed that he touted the services of Osimhen to the Egyptian club, but nothing concrete happened.
“I don’t want to delve into many details about the matter of offering Osimhen to Zamalek. Zamalek is always my club, and I will do the same whenever I see a good player. One of the problems we face in Africa is the lack of courage in giving opportunities to young players,” the former Barcelona player said.
Amuneke scored nine goals in twenty-seven appearances for the Super Eagles and always wants to put talented African youngsters on the global stage.
“We always look for the ready player in Africa, although the young ones are the future stars. I suggested Osimhen’s name to people at Zamalek, and the answer was we are going to watch him, but nothing happened,” he added.
Osimhen went on to play for Wolfsburg before moving to Charleroi, LOSC Lille, and finally, Napoli where he has become a household name.