Comparing Victor Osimhen and Diego Maradona’s First Four Seasons at Napoli

Comparing Victor Osimhen and Diego Maradona’s First Four Seasons at Napoli

Edwin Kiplagat
March 1, 2024 at 10:13 AM
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  • Victor Osimhen has lived up to the expectations at Napoli since his transfer in 2020
  • The Nigerian superstar recently bagged a hat-trick against Sassuolo in a Serie A tie
  • His stats in four seasons with Napoli are nearly identical to that of Diego Maradona

Last season, Victor Osimhen brought joy to Napoli fans after decades of pain.

The distressing lows came after the late great Diego Maradona had delivered two Serie A titles in 1986/87 and 1989/90.

Osimhen is in his fourth season at the club and recently matched a record held by the Argentine icon.

Victor Osimhen, Diego Maradona, Napoli, Serie A, Nigeria, Argentina, UEFA Cup, AFCOn
Victor Osimhen and Diego Maradona have contributed to Napoli's three Serie A titles. Photos by Alessandro Sabattini.
Source: Getty Images

In the 2023/24 season, the Nigerian became the first African to win the Serie A Golden Boot after scoring 26 goals. This season, their title defence is in tatters, and Osimhen made a slow start to the season.

They have changed managers three times already and are lying eighth in the table, 26 points behind leaders, Inter Milan.

The African Footballer of the Year will likely leave at the end of this season, and the number of his suitors grows by the day. Sports Brief looks at the stats of the two club legends in their first four seasons at Napoli.

Victor Osimhen at Napoli

The 25-year-old striker joined Napoli in 2020 from French side, Lille, for $96 million, making him the most expensive African footballer ever.

He has more than repaid the faith and lived up to the transfer fee. Before Osimhen, Napoli had not won a league title since the 1989/90 season. In the 2022/23 season, that changed.

That season, Osimhen produced his best campaign at the Partenopei. He scored 31 goals in 39 matches, 26 in Serie A and five in the Champions League. His goals in the league helped the club win their first league title in 33 years.

Since joining the club, Osimhen has played 122 games, scored 72 goals and provided 18 assists. He has played 98 games in the Serie A and scored 61 goals. He is now 13th in the club's list of all-time goal scorers.

The Super Eagles star sustained a serious eye socket injury in November 2021, which saw him miss three months of action. He has worn a face mask since recovering from the injury.

If he stays at the club for the foreseeable future, he could cement his status as one of Napoli's icons.

Diego Maradona at Napoli

Maradona is one of the greatest footballers of all time. The best spell of his career was when he played for Napoli from 1984 to 1991.

He brought unprecedented success to the club during that period. They won two Scudetti, a UEFA Cup, a Coppa Italia, and an Italian Super Cup, per These Football Times. He also finished as the Serie A top scorer in 1988.

During that period, Maradona produced an iconic performance at the 1986 World Cup with Argentina, in which they won.

The Argentine legend scored 115 goals for Napoli. In his first four seasons at the club, he bagged 68 goals and provided 34 assists.

However, Maradona's career cannot be measured by statistics. He was a larger-than-life footballer. After he died in 2020, Napoli renamed their stadium, Stadio Diego Armando Maradona from Stadio San Paolo.

Here's how Osimhen's stats in his four seasons at Napoli compare to Maradona.

Games

Goals

Assists

Diego Maradona

145

68

34

Victor Osimhen

122

72

18

All stats courtesy of Transfermarkt.

Osimhen matched Maradona's record

After his hat-trick against Sassuolo, the African Footballer of the Year took his tally in the Serie A to 11 goals.

The Nigeria striker has now scored at least 10 Serie A goals in four straight seasons. Since joining Napoli in 2020 from Lille, Osimhen has scored 10, 14, 26, and 11 goals in the last four Serie A seasons, respectively.

Osimhen joins Maradona (1984-85 to 1987-88) and Attila Sallustro (1929-30 to 1932-33) on that list, as Sports Brief reported earlier.

The Super Eagles star has now scored 72 goals for the Italian giants in 122 matches. 61 of those goals have come in the Serie A.

Authors
Edwin Kiplagat photo
Edwin Kiplagat
Edwin Kiplagat has five years of experience in journalism working as a Sports Editor at Africa Insight Communications and ESPN. Edwin Kiplagat is a Bachelor's Degree holder in journalism from the Multimedia University of Kenya.