Odion Ighalo is hoping Victor Osimhen would recover in time to lead Nigeria’s attack at the next Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon, where he will be ‘required’.
After colliding with Inter Milan defender Milan Skriniar earlier this month, Napoli striker Osimhen suffered a significant lesion to his eye socket.
After his eye came out of its socket in the collision, the 22-year-old needed surgery, which included six plates in his face.
Osimhen has been declared out of action for the next three months, which includes the African Football Confederation (AFCON).
But Ighalo, who recently returned to international football after a brief hiatus, says he is hoping for a miracle to see the child in Cameroon.
“I spoke to him after his surgery to wish him well, and to tell him that this is one of those things that happen,” Ighalo told ESPN.
“I am praying by God’s grace for him to recover. We need Osimhen at the Nations Cup.
“He is young, he is a fighter and he will come back stronger than before and make it to the AFCON. We will see him there doing well as he has been doing because this is his time and he needs to shine.”
The 32-year-old announced his retirement from international football after helping Nigeria win bronze at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt, but he returned to the team this month in a tense 1-1 draw with Cape Verde.