Sunday Jul 03, 2022. 13:00
Former Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr believes Victor Osimhen can become a world-class striker and he also backed the player to replace Robert Lewandowski at Bayern Munich.
The Franco-German tactician handed Osimhen, who is on the books of Italian side SSC Napoli, his international debut in 2017 as Nigeria thrashed Togo 3-0 in a friendly match and he has since become the Super Eagles’ first-choice striker.
“If he develops further, he can become one. Victor still needs to improve a few things, like working on his body language,” Rohr, who was dismissed as Nigeria coach last year, told Sport Bild.
“If something doesn’t work, he shows it too much on the pitch. But these are small things, he can handle them.
“Of course, I called Victor [Osimhen] up to the national team when he was 18 and everyone was surprised. It wasn’t easy for the boy, who had to fight back after a serious injury,” he continued.
“He had a difficult time at VfL Wolfsburg (2017 to 2019, ed.) after Klaus Allofs, who discovered him for VfL, was no longer there. Victor fought his way through, he learned that as a little boy.
“When he was ten years old, he sold water in Nigeria’s giant metropolis of Lagos, wherever there is a traffic jam – in the sweltering heat to make ends meet,” the 69-year-old mentor added.
“This boy knows exactly where he comes from and will never forget it. Victor is also a fighter on the pitch, has great moral and physical qualities.
“Technically he has improved a lot, recently in Lille and Napoli he showed how dangerous he is in front of goal.”
When asked whether Osimhen would fit perfectly at German champions Bayern if the club released Polish world-class striker Lewandowski, who has been linked with Spain’s FC Barcelona, Rohr said: “If Bayern let Robert Lewandowski go, Victor would be a good alternative.
“I think he would prevail in Munich. Since he already has experience in the Bundesliga and speaks a little German, his adjustment period is, of course, shorter than with other players from abroad.”