Lookman backs teammates to cope in his absence; gives Atalanta parting gift before jetting off to AFCONPublished: December 30, 2023
Ademola Lookman is backing his Atalanta teammates to do well without him while he's away on international duty with the Super Eagles at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations.
The 2017 Fifa U20 World Cup winner with England is set to represent Nigeria in his first major tournament, having been named in the final squad for the Africa Cup of Nations.
In his farewell game before linking up with the Nigeria squad at their training camp in Abu Dhabi, capital city of the United Arab Emirates, Lookman signed off in style by scoring the game-winning goal in Atalanta's 1-0 win over Lecce on matchday 18 of the Serie A.
As the match edged towards the hour mark, Lookman gave Atalanta the perfect parting gift before jetting off to the Africa Cup of Nations with the Nigeria squad when he scored with a a low angled diagonal shot into the bottom corner.
Five minutes from time, Lookman - Atalanta's top scorer this season with seven goals - came close to doubling the advantage but was denied by Lecce goalkeeper Wladimiro Falcone.
Atalanta coach Gian Piero Gasperini admitted after the game at the Gewiss Stadium in Bergamo that he was worried about Lookman's imminent absence.
Speaking to DAZN, via Tuttomercatoweb , Lookman said: 'We have a good team, with strong players.
"I will go to the African Cup but my teammates will do an excellent job, I have faith in them. Will I miss Bergamo? Yes, I can't wait to come back here."
Should Nigeria go all the way and advance to the final of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations, Lookman would not be able to feature in six games on the bounce.
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