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How Victor Osimhen Could Have Saved Walter Mazzarri’s Job at Napoli

by Thomaz Oseghale
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How Victor Osimhen Could Have Saved Walter Mazzarri's Job at Napoli

Former Napoli coach, Walter Mazzarri, has acknowledged that the presence of Nigerian striker Victor Osimhen in the Napoli team could have extended his tenure at the club.

Mazzarri was relieved of his duties on Monday, becoming the second managerial casualty of the reigning Italian champions, just three months after taking over from Rudi Garcia.

When Mazzarri joined Napoli in November, Osimhen was dealing with a hamstring injury. Unfortunately, Osimhen’s injury and his absence during the Africa Cup of Nations in Ivory Coast prevented him from being available to the manager.

As a result, Osimhen played only eight games under Mazzarri. During Osimhen’s absence, Napoli struggled without their talisman, managing just three wins from nine games.

Even upon his return, Osimhen has been unable to play due to fitness concerns. Mazzarri admitted that he had hoped to have Osimhen available for Napoli’s UEFA Champions League round of 16 tie against Barcelona, as it could have bought him some more time in his position.

“I was hoping to manage against Barcelona with Victor Osimhen on the pitch,” Mazzarri said in an interview with La Repubblica.

Osimhen played a crucial role in Napoli’s charge for their first Scudetto in 33 years last season, scoring 25 goals and winning the Serie A golden boot.

Following Mazzarri’s departure, Slovakia’s Francesco Calzona has been appointed as the head coach of the three-time Serie A champions until the end of the season.

It is clear that Mazzarri recognized the impact that Osimhen could have had on the team’s performance and his own job security.

Unfortunately, circumstances beyond his control prevented him from fully utilizing the Nigerian striker’s talents.

This article was updated 2 months ago

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