Victor Osimhen, Nigerian international football forward player, and new Napoli player, yesterday lost his cool with The Punch online newspaper for publishing an article that misrepresented him and lied about him. The Punch posted an article with the headline, “Osimhen: I want to emulate Maradona at Napoli“. But the young forward, who was recently signed from French elite league side, Lille, quoted a tweet of the link to the article by the Punch Twitter handle, saying “I never said such a thing, y’all copy paste journalist just like to fabricate lies, since the passing of my late father I haven’t grant any interview whatsoever, stop this nonsense else na thunder go fire una.” Victor’s father died in May this year. He only signed with Napoli less than two weeks ago.
The striker, who was signed at the transfer fee of €50 million with an additional add-on of €10 million on a later date. The pacy forward has been a prospect courted by many top clubs. He enjoyed a successful time with Lille in the French Ligue Une.
Maradona, the Argentine legend, is one of Napoli’s most revered names. The idea of Osimhen equating himself with the cult figure in Naples could, and did, elicit negative feedback from the fans of the club towards their new signing, a situation that Victor would not love to find himself in at the beginning of his sojourn in Italy.
The Punch had quoted “credible sources” to back up their article, but the headline itself has little to relate with the contents of the article in question.
Fans and observers were divided about the justification for the outburst against Punch. While some felt that it was unethical journalism to claim that one said something but in reality did not, and feared that the headline could destroy his relationship with the fans of his new club; others were of the opinion that although it was wrong for Punch to report such falsehood, Victor’s invective utterance was a step taken too far.
Osimhen later apologised for his harsh words to the Punch, saying “As much as I dislike being misquoted or taken out of context by the media, I want to apologise to @MobilePunch and other journalists that felt offended for the type of language I used in my earlier post, sorry about it, make una no vex I still be una boy…peace❤️”