Osimhen back in goal as Napoli return to winning ways against Sampdoria
Victor Osimhen was on the scoresheet as Napoli returned to winning ways following their 2-0 win over Sampdoria in Serie A on Sunday.
- Osimhen showed great centre-forward play to score Napoli’s opener
- The Nigerian international caused defensive problems at Sampdoria
- The Super Eagles striker still leads the Serie A Golden Boot race with 10 goals
WHAT HAPPENED? Osimhen scored Napoli’s first goal after showing a striker’s instinct to get in the right place to poke home after 19 minutes.
The Nigeria international spotted Mario Rui on the ball and sprinted into the box, getting between the two centre-backs, before connecting well with Rui’s perfectly timed pass to net the 10th.th league goals and 11th in all competitions.
Osimhen’s goal came after Napoli had missed a penalty in the fourth minute when Matteo Politano saw his effort saved by the goalkeeper after Cameroon midfielder Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa was brought down in the box two minutes into the game.
The Super Eagles striker had seen his 16thth-minute header saved by the keeper and also hit the defenders on the half turn a few minutes later. Osimhen was then heavily involved when Sampdoria were reduced to 10 men six minutes into the break, when Tomas Rincon received a straight red card for bringing him down.
Osimhen received the ball on the right wing, beat his marker before sprinting into the box, but Rincon hacked him down, resulting in a dismissal for the Venezuela midfielder to give Napoli the advantage.
However, the Serie A leaders were unable to capitalize on their numerical strength, with Sampdoria clinging to the back until eight minutes from time when Eljif Elmas converted from the spot after Ronaldo Vieira handled the ball in the box.
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Osimhen had been criticized for not sparkling as Napoli suffered their first league defeat against Inter Milan on Wednesday, but he came alive against Sampdoria, with his movement in and out of the box impressive.
The 24-year-old blocked two shots on goal and the same number against an opponent he has now scored four goals in the past.
Osimhen has now scored eight goals in his last 10 league games and remains top of the Serie A scoring charts with 10, two ahead of Inter’s Lautaro Martinez, Spezia’s M’Bala Nzola and Bologna’s Marko Arnautovic, who are all tied on eight. .
THE VERDICT: Osimhen’s performances suggested he remains Napoli’s main man and the Azzurri will need him to stay fit and avoid injury if they are to win their first Serie A title since 1990.
WHAT WILL BE NEXT? Napoli’s title credentials will be tested when they host Juventus in their next league match, with the Old Lady currently in form, having won eight straight matches.