Victor Osimhen: Arsenal, Chelsea must fight off new Prem giant as Napoli chief makes huge striker admission

Victor Osimhen

Napoli ace Victor Osimhen is likely to secure a move this summer

Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis has provided a big update on the future of star player Victor Osimhen, revealing that Arsenal and Chelsea must now fend off Manchester City, while also sending interested clubs a big warning.

Osimhen made a name for himself as one of the deadliest centre-forwards in Europe last season when he netted an incredible 31 goals in 39 appearances to help Napoli win their first Scudetto since 1990 and also reach the quarter-finals of the Champions League.

Osimhen has not been quite as devastating for Napoli this term, due to injuries and his appearance at the Africa Cup of Nations with Nigeria. Although, the 25-year-old has still managed to find the back of the net 13 times, which includes a hat-trick in the 6-1 thrashing of Sassuolo on Wednesday.

Osimhen’s stock remains very high and clubs around Europe are queuing up to make him their new talisman.

Sources have confirmed to TEAMtalk that the former Lille ace is at the very top of Mauricio Pochettino’s striker wish list, despite Nicolas Jackson improving in recent months.

Osimhen penned a new Napoli contract in December which runs until June 2026 and includes a stunning €130million (£111m) release clause. But that will not put Chelsea off as they are once again ready to break the £100m barrier, this time for Nigeria’s most exciting star.

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But the Blues are not alone in wanting to snare Osimhen. Arsenal have earmarked him as a possible target in case they miss out on Brentford’s Ivan Toney.

De Laurentiis has now sensationally added Man City to the mix, while Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain cannot be ruled out either.

Victor Osimhen ‘attracted’ by Arsenal, Chelsea, Man City

“Victor is another good player that Napoli have,” De Laurentiis said in an interview with Sky Sports. “We had (Edinson) Cavani, (Gonzalo) Higuain, (Ezequiel) Lavezzi and we had (Dries) Mertens, we had a lot of people who were fantastic.

“Osimhen is a very great player – but you know: Napoli is a fantastic place. There are certain players who fell in love with Napoli and stayed, like (Marek) Hamsik for 11 years. Or like others for eight years.

“And there are others who are attracted by Real Madrid, by PSG, by Arsenal, Manchester City, Chelsea. So you cannot stop them, especially when they have a fixed amount of money where they can be bought.”

De Laurentiis added: “He [Osimhen] has a release clause. It’s a very big amount of money.”

When asked if the Serie A star will remain at Napoli for next season, the outspoken film producer warned the potential suitors that he does not need to sell for money.

“Who knows who will leave? We will see,” he said.

Napoli won’t have to sell talisman for money – owner

“The money is the last problem for Napoli. We always made very good acquisitions as we did in the past. We will do [so] in the future.

“The problem is just sentimental problems. When you see a player leave, it’s like a son. You are also happy if this son has a fantastic success everywhere else.”

It will be intriguing to see which club Osimhen is playing for next season, should the Naples club end up selling.

While De Laurentiis claims City are interested, Pep Guardiola’s side will only make such a move if Erling Haaland departs.

Instead, it is likely to come down to a straight shoot-out between Chelsea and PSG. Pochettino is desperate to sign Osimhen to elevate his attack, while PSG feel the 35-cap international can replace most of Kylian Mbappe’s staggering output.

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