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Osimhen is at Drogba’s level but must stop diving — Mourinho

ROMA manager Jose Mourinho has praised and condemned Victor Osimhen in the same breath after the Super Eagles striker helped Napoli to victory last night.

Osimhen scored a spectacular opening goal to inspire Serie A leaders Napoli to a 2-1 win over Roma at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona as they opened up a 13-point gap at the top.

The Nigeria international extended his lead in the scoring charts to two over his compatriot Ademola Lookman with hid 14th Serie A goal of the season.

It was a stunning finish, as Osimhen controlled Kvicha Kvaratskhelia’s cross with his chest, then steadied the ball with his thigh before volleying home past a helpless goalkeeper Rui Patricio.

When asked during his post-match press conference about Osimhen in comparison to Didier Drogba, who played under him at Chelsea, Mourinho commended then warned the Super Eagles striker.

“He is of the same level as Drogba, but Didier didn’t dive,” the Portuguese coach said. “If Victor changes, then OK. I’d buy him if I was at a club with a lot of money.

“However, if he does go to England one day, he needs to change, because in Italy they put up with this sort of behaviour, whereas in the Premier League, they’d come down hard on him.”

Mourinho revealed that he spoke to Osimhen after the match.

“I told him that he scored a wonderful goal and needs to stop diving so much. His goal was fantastic, he did the same thing when we met earlier this season, so he’s a fantastic player. But he mustn’t dive.”

During last night’s match, Osimhen was given a rough treatment by Roma defenders and even had to have his wrist bandaged after it was stepped on. He was taken off in the 76th minute.

The Nigerian hardly goes to ground without being kicked, while Drogba was often accused by opponents of taking a dive to gain advantage when he played under Mourinho at Chelsea in the mid-2000s.

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Naija Times