MANCHESTER United have joined the rat race to sign Super Eagles striker Victor Osimhen after the club submitted a last minute rival bid to secure his services and scupper a potential move to Italian giants Napoli.
Osimhen, 21, is one of the hottest properties in Europe at the moment after scoring18 goals for Lille in the 2019/20 season, helping the club finish fourth in the French league. Over recent months, he has been the subject of a lot of speculation, with several English clubs including Liverpool, Arsenal, Manchester United, Tottenham Hotspurs and Chelsea all linked with him.
Over the last week, however, Napoli reached a €81m deal with Lille to purchase the striker but while it was still going through, Tottenham Hotspurs put in a last minute bid. Manchester United are thought to have now contacted Osimhen’s agent with a view of hijacking the transfer.
Italian journalist Ciro Venerato, Said Manchester United have not given up on the prospect of signing Osimhen as a permanent replacement for Romelu Lukaku. Compatriot Odion Ighalo, who is currently on loan with the club is not a long term prospect as he will return to his parent Chinese club at the end of January next year.
Mr Venerato said: “A few hours ago Manchester United phoned Osimhen’s new agent to find out if he had signed with Napoli. If an offer from United comes, there would not be many possibilities because they have an economic power superior to that of Napoli.”
This comes just a day after Super Eagles goalkeeper Francis Uzoho signed a three year deal with Cypriot club Apoel. Uzoho, 21, joins from his parent club Spanish division two side Deportivo La Coruna, who had loaned him out to another team in Cyprus Omonia Nicosia.
Uzoho, who has spent the last 18 months in Cyprus, will now play in the Europa League with Apoel during the 2020/21 season. Apoel were third on the league table before the Cypriot First Division was declared null and void because of the coronavirus pandemic.
An Apoel spokesman said: “The company Apoel Football announces the conclusion of an agreement with Real Club Deportivo de La Coruña for the acquisition of Francis Odinaka Uzoho. The co-operation between Apoel and Uzoho will last for three years until May 2023.
Uzoho spent the 2019/20 season on loan with league rivals Omonia Nicosia where he played five matches before suffering a knee injury that has kept him out of action since November. He picked up the ligament injury during a Nigerian international friendly outing against Brazil in Singapore.
Starting his European career at Deportivo La Coruna in 2017 after he was scouted while in action for Aspire Academy at a tournament in Barcelona, Uzoho spent the following campaign in the Spanish Segunda division with Elche where he played seven matches before moving to Cyprus to seek first-team football with Anorthosis Famagusta. During his brief stint in Famagusta, Uzoho won an appeal after he was fined €1,000 and was handed a one-game ban by the Cyprus Football Association for submitting an invalid medical certificate ahead of his league debut, while Anorthosis were deducted nine points.