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Chelsea closely following Victor Osimhen’s progress at Napoli — report

One for the future

SSC Napoli v FC Spartak Moscow - UEFA Europa League Photo by Franco Romano/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Victor Osimhen first entered our radar about two years ago, when we faced Lille OSC in the Champions League group stages, and we learnt that the budding young striker was not only one to watch, but was inspired by Chelsea to become a professional footballer in the first place. The obvious stories linking him to the Blues soon followed, helped by him also scoring against us in one of the two games.

Osimhen did in fact turn that one season at Lille into a big-money move, but not to Chelsea. Instead, Napoli paid an eye-watering sum of €70m (70!) in the summer of 2020, nearly six times as much as what Lille paid to VfL Wolfsburg just twelve months prior. What global pandemic economic crisis?

The Nigeria international’s first season in Naples wasn’t exactly super awesome (just 10 goals in 30 appearances), but he’s started his second season like a house on fire (much like his season at Lille in 2019), scoring 7 times in the first 7 games in all competitions, helping to stake his team to a perfect start and a two-point lead at the top of the Serie A table.

And that means it’s time for some new transfer rumors, too, with Chelsea back in the picture. According to Gazzetta dello Sport (via Sport Witness), we are one of four “big” clubs following his progress with keen interest.

Given that Osimhen’s price tag is said to be in the Lukaku territory (€120m or so), we’re obviously not going to run out and grab him just yet — not to mention, the Lukaku Era has just begun. But Osimhen’s still just 22, so it’s certainly worth keeping tabs on his development for a few years down the line. (See also: Tammy Abraham at AS Roma, and his €80m buy-back that starts in 2023.)