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Friday, April 12, 2024

Special Chelsea ‘agent’ urging Victor Osimhen to join from Napoli –

Former Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel has admitted he’s continually “sending messages” to Victor Osimhen over joining the club from Napoli this summer.

Osimhen has long been targeted by a handful of top sides and recently signed a new contract which includes a release clause worth over £100m to faciltate a summer exit from Napoli.

Chelsea hold strong interest in the Nigeria international but Arsenal remain in the race for his signature, while Paris Saint-Germain have added Osimhen’s name to a list of potential replacements for Kylian Mbappe.

“I think there is genuine interest between both,” Mikel told Ben Jacobs, while admitting he’s acting as somewhat of an ‘agent’ . “I think he loves the club, he wants to come to the club. Obviously, he wants to follow my footsteps as a Nigerian player who has played for Chelsea – Victor Moses, Celestine Babayaro, not a lot of us.

“London as well, fantastic city, instead of going to Liverpool or places like that you want to live in London. But he also has a lot of interest. Paris Saint-Germain, Man Utd…

“I’m still pushing, sending him messages, trying to make sure he doesn’t expect to much, narrow you’re mind on one club – the Blues.”

Osimhen has 11 goals in 15 games this season / Timothy Rogers/GettyImages

Meanwhile, Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis has admitted he is powerless to prevent Osimhen from leaving the club this summer because of his release clause, which is worth “a very big amount of money”.

“Victor is another good player that Napoli have,” De Laurentiis told Sky Sports News. “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.”

Asked specifically about the value of the release clause, De Laurentiis kept his cards close to his chest.

“He has a release clause,” De Laurentiis said. “It’s a very big amount of money.”

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