It has been a long time since Victor Osimhen was regarded as a talisman for the nation of Nigeria. Indeed, the injury he got against Napoli should prevent him from participating in the Africa Cup of Nations, and as a result, he has become a greater burden to his country....
The recent performances of Emmanuel Dennis for Watford, including victories over Manchester United, Leicester City, and Chelsea, provide indications that he could be the man to spearhead the Super Eagles' assault in Cameroon this summer.
A lovely goal against Chelsea helped Watford lose 2-1 at Vicarage Road on an evening that first looked like it would be difficult for Dennis to retain his concentration. By remaining vigilant, he demonstrated one of the arts of the forward. This season's Premier League total of six is deserving of attention, as well.
It is critical to understand what others can accomplish in Osimhen's absence, particularly on occasions like tonight, when the opposition puts a lone striker's focus to the test by denying his team-mates possession of the ball.
While he was playing away from home for a large portion of the match before scoring, the national team selectors had nothing else to look at in the striker other than his patience and efforts to remain mentally sharp throughout the extended stretches when play was taking place far away from him. Dennis, despite all of this, would have continued to be significant even if there had been no impact of any kind on Chelsea's season.
Nigeria requires a player whose marksmanship is the essence of his commitment to the Africa Cup of Nations, and someone like that exists.
Footballers who are well-suited for that type of profession are hard to come by and expensive.
Odion Ighalo, Paul Onuachu, Terem Moffi, Taiwo Awoniyi, Emmanuel Dennis, Simy Nwankwo, and Kelechi Iheanacho are among the players who are likely to be called upon to fill the vacuum left by Osimhen's departure.
Given his work rate and his ability to produce tremendous spurts of energy up front, finding a replacement for the Napoli man in the African showpiece in Nigeria will be extremely difficult.
Dennis, out of all of the strikers mentioned above, should be given the nod owing to his abilities and eye for scoring crucial goals, as demonstrated against Manchester United, Manchester City, and Chelsea.
With Dennis on the field, there may be a chance for Nigeria to score in Cameroon.
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