Napoli captain blames Osimhen over outburst

Napoli’s captain, Giovanni Di Lorenzo, has criticized Victor Osimhen for his reaction after being substituted during Napoli’s goalless draw against Bologna on Sunday, which extended their winless streak to three consecutive Serie A games.

Osimhen, who missed an opportunity to end his goal drought by failing to convert a penalty during the match, expressed his frustration towards Napoli’s coach, Rudi Garcia, when he was substituted for Giovanni Simeone with only four minutes of play remaining. He argued that the team should have kept two strikers in attack as they searched for a winning goal.

Osimhen’s anger was evident as he walked to the substitute’s bench, visibly upset and tossing away his jacket.

Responding to the incident, Di Lorenzo shared his thoughts with DAZN, saying, “We handle certain situations within the locker room, and they become more noticeable when things aren’t going well. In times like these, we don’t need such attitudes; we need unity and focus on our objectives. We’ll address this with the team and the coach to find a resolution. Falling behind in the championship, even early on, isn’t something we accept.”

This incident is not the first time Garcia’s decisions have faced dissent from players. Just last week, Khvicha Kvaratskhelia expressed his disappointment when he was substituted during a game against Genoa.

Meanwhile, Garcia defended Osimhen after his penalty miss, saying, “Even the greatest players in football history have missed penalties. I did talk to him about his substitution, but what was discussed with him and the team will stay within the locker room. I may not be pleased with their performance, but we have a large squad, and everyone must be utilized. Osimhen is our designated penalty taker.”

The reigning Italian champions have had a challenging start to the season, currently trailing leaders Inter Milan by seven points after just five league games.