Awoniyi, Boniface, Iheanacho, Orban: Who is closest to challenging Osimhen for Super Eagles No. 9 spotPublished: September 08, 2023
Nigeria is blessed with the best striking force in Africa at the moment.
In the ongoing 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualification campaign, Nigeria have scored 16 goals which is the most of any team.
With players like Victor Osimhen, Taiwo Awoniyi, Gift Orban, Kelechi Iheanacho and Victor Boniface, goals are not a rare commodity for Jose Peseiro's team and you will agree with me that Nigeria has the strongest striking force in Africa.
Despite the array of talents, it is common knowledge that Osimhen is the first-choice striker of the team and the reasons are known to everyone.
While Peseiro has deployed a 2-man striking force for most of his time as Nigeria's coach, he has equally shown that he can also have one player lead the attack as shown in the 3-2 win over Sierra Leone.
Should the Portuguese tactician stick to his tactics from the win against the Leone Stars, which of Boniface, Iheanacho, Awoniyi and Orban is in the best position to rival Osimhen?
Iheanacho would have been a straightforward answer due to his experience, having made more appearances than the others combined.
However, the Leicester City forward is not consistent enough to rival his Napoli counterpart and is best suited to playing in a 2-man attack.
The next in line based on experience is Awoniyi who hasn't been consistent with the Super Eagles squad.
However, the Nottingham Forest striker is in the best position to challenge Osimhen and here is why.
In the last two seasons, only Osimhen has scored more goals than the Forest striker among Super Eagles players in the top 5 leagues in Europe.
The 26-year-old has notched a double-digit number of goals in the Premier League and Bundesliga in the past two seasons which is a testament to his ability to play at top level.
While Orban and Boniface have shown their attacking prowess, they haven't shown that at a top level as much as much as the Liverpool academy product.
Boniface has hit the ground running in the Bundesliga and it remains to be seen if he can be consistent.
Therefore, at the moment, Awoniyi is in the best position to challenge or deputize Osimhen as the Super Eagles' focal point in attack.
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