Victor Osimhen, the best African player of the year 2023 and the Italian Napoli star, revealed why he continues to wear a mask until now and why he will have to wear it for the rest of his career as a football player despite his recovery from the injury he suffered in 2021.
The Nigerian international star appeared wearing the mask last Sunday afternoon, during the match between his country, Nigeria, and Equatorial Guinea, in the first round of the group stage, and then in the second match against Ivory Coast yesterday, Thursday, in the 2024 Africa Cup of Nations finals in Ivory Coast.
He was Napoli's team doctor in the 2022-2023 football season. Roberto Rogero, revealed that “Osimhen has fully recovered, and he still wears the protective mask because it gives him a feeling of security, but he has healed. He has his own balance and wants to wear it. We hope that this mask will be enough.”
Regarding the real reason that drives him to wear a protective mask, Osimhen said in a statement to the Nigerian newspaper “Daily Post”: “I underwent surgery after the serious injury I suffered in the Italian League competitions, and there are screws that pass through my jaw and face, and they are still with me until now.”
Osimhen revealed that he suffered a setback again, when the Cagliari goalkeeper punched the Napoli striker in the face in the last match he played before participating in the African Cup of Nations.
I Must Wear Mask Throughout my Career Due to Screws in my Jaws, Face — Osimhen
Victor Osimhen has revealed that he will continue wearing a protective mask throughout his career due to safety concerns.https://t.co/bxFLOShtzK
— Parallel Facts (@ParallelFacts) January 17, 2024
The player said, “In the last match I played against Cagliari when I headed the ball, my face was stained with blood. The goalkeeper hit me in the face and there was blood even with the mask on, so it is really dangerous for me to play without using the mask, of course.”
This prompted the Nigerian national team doctor to give direct advice that he should wear the protective mask throughout his career, not take it off, and work to find stronger alternatives, so that the screws in his face and jaw are not exposed to damage.
Osimhen (25 years old) is still suffering from his head collision with Milan Skriniar, the current Paris Saint-Germain defender, when they played in the confrontation between Napoli and Inter Milan on November 21, 2021 in the Italian Football League.