Analysis

Is Victor Osimhen worth a £70m gamble?

Victor-Osimhen-Chelsea

Lille striker Victor Osimhen has been the revelation of the season in Ligue 1. His top performances for Les Dogues have led to several Premier League clubs interested in buying him. He was the third-highest goalscorer in the Ligue 1 behind leaders Kylian Mbappe & Ben Yedder and Moussa Dembele.

The Nigerian impressed everyone after his exploits in the 2015 FIFA U-17 World Cup. He led Nigeria to lift the U-17 World Cup and won the Golden Boot & Silver Ball. He scored 10 goals in the tournament. He signed for VfL Wolfsburg in 2017. In the summer of 2018, he joined Belgian club Charleroi. After a successful loan spell in Belgium, Lille came calling and signed the Nigerian last summer. He quickly made his name and after just two months, he was named the Ligue 1 Player of the Month for October.

Victor-Osimhen-Lille

Ligue 1 was ended permanently and Osimhen helped Les Dogues finish fourth and take the Europa League spot. He scored 18 goals in 38 appearances for Lille the past season.

Here are Victor Osimhen’s Ligue 1 stats from the 2019-20 season:

Matches – 27
Goals – 13
Penalty goals – 2
Assists – 4
Shots per game – 3.2
Dribbles – 15
Aerials won per game – 4.4

Despite Lille winning the most penalties (8) in Ligue 1 the past season, Osimhen took just 2 penalties. The Nigerian prodigy made his league debut for Lille with a bang scoring two goals. He managed an average of 0.62 goals per 90 min which exceeds the league average of 0.37.

Osimhen is a natural predator in from of the goal and is a poacher by instinct. He almost takes all his shots from inside the box. He is 21-year-old and has established himself one of the best young forwards at the moment.

Lille_OsimhenVictor

Christophe Galtier’s Lille are a counter-attacking team and Osimhen is best utilised in this style with Soumare and Sanches pulling the strings on the flanks. Osimhen has a good ability to hold the ball and is excellent at hold-up play. He can play as a target man as well as a forward. He is aa modern forward with power, pace and final product. He has a knack for being in the right place at the right time. His gameplay is somewhat similar to that to that of Tammy Abraham.

With teams like Liverpool, Manchester United and Arsenal vying for a striker in the market, Osimhen can be a good option. If he joins a top side at such a young age, he wouldn’t complain about the starting spot as he will get to learn from the best. But Lille wants £70m for him and that could be a problem for top teams especially after the coronavirus pandemic.

So from a football standpoint, it’s probably the best for him to stay with Lille. He will get more playing time and get more chances of playing for his national team too. With AFCON next season, it’s a good idea for him to stay. Financially, Lille may ask for a much bigger amount if the Nigerian continues with his top form. No club is ready to risk £70m on him. It’s too big an amount to gamble on a player who will be labelled ‘one-season wonder’ in the Premier League after few dismal performances, which is totally fine for a youngster in a new league.

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