Victor Osimhen is one of the most highly-rated strikers in world football. The Nigerian sensation scored 26 goals in 30 starts last season to lead his club to their first Serie A title in 33 years, and as a result, was named the African Player of the Year for 2023 at the CAF Awards.
Thus, it comes as little surprise to see interest in the 24-year-old from some of the biggest and richest clubs in the world. Chelsea and Arsenal, in particular, have been heavily linked with the former Lille attack for obvious reasons.
The big-spending Blues have splashed over a billion since Todd Boehly and Co. took over the club but the London giants are without a reliable goalscorer. Meanwhile, the Gunners are competing for the Premier League title but lack a talisman in front of goal, instead relying on Gabriel Jesus, Gabriel Martinelli, Bukayo Saka, and — more recently — Kai Havertz to share the load.
Unfortunately, those two clubs have been dealt a huge blow. According to Gianluca Di Marzio, Osimhen, who has been heavily linked with a Diego Armando Maradona Stadium exit following his recent row with Napoli, is close to agreeing a contract extension with his current employers.
The Italian journalist writes that the player and the club held a crucial meeting that has laid the groundwork for an extension. Osimhen will sign a new deal until 2026, which is merely an extra year on his current contract, and will get a release clause worth 130-140 million euros.
Additionally, the striker will get a wage increase that should put him on par with his contemporaries. As a result, Osimhen could get a Premier League move, if he so desires, but would secure his current club a handsome transfer fee.
The Nigerian will enter the final year of his contract this summer under his current terms and could have secured a cheaper exit. However, this new deal, which is expected to be formalized very soon, secures the interests of both parties so long as a suitor is willing to trigger that hefty release clause.
This is a blow to both Arsenal and Chelsea who could have taken advantage of the player’s contractual situation. The Gunners, having spent big last summer on Declan Rice and Kai Havertz, might not have the appetite for another marque signing while the Blues are reportedly facing FFP issues.