Transfer season: 5 Nigerians who desperately need a move this summer

The 2023/24 season has come to a close, and the footballing world has set its sights on the upcoming transfer window. For Nigerian footballers, this period presents an opportunity to take their careers to the next level.

Afrik Foot analyses five Nigerian players whose situations suggest a change of club could be the catalyst for their growth and success. 

Emmanuel Dennis 

Emmanuel Dennis' loan spell at Watford has come to an end, leaving his future uncertain. The 26-year-old returned to Vicarage Road in January on a six-month loan from Nottingham Forest but will not be offered an extension.

He made a positive impact in his 18 appearances for the Hornets, scoring four goals, including a crucial winner in Tom Cleverley's first game as interim head coach.

Transfer season: 5 Nigerians who desperately need a move this summer
Photo by Icon Sport

With Nottingham now under the management of Nuno Espirito Santo, it remains unclear whether Dennis will be offered a chance to prove himself during pre-season.

Stanley Nwabili

Chippa United's Stanley Nwabali is setting his sights on bigger challenges. Despite his impressive performances, including 10 clean sheets in 25 league matches and a standout showing at the 2024 AFCON for Nigeria, the 27-year-old has been hinting at a move away from the South African club.

Nwabali's talent has attracted interest from abroad, with reports suggesting clubs in England and Saudi Arabia are circling.

Transfer season: 5 Nigerians who desperately need a move this summer
Photo by Icon Sport

However, Chippa United isn't letting their star player go easily. They've reportedly set a hefty asking price of R30 million (approximately ₦2.3 billion) for Nwabali, a price tag that could potentially limit the number of serious contenders for his signature.

Kelechi Nwakali

Midfielder Kelechi Nwakali's future at relegated Chaves is uncertain.

The 25-year-old was caught using his phone on the bench during the defeat that confirmed their relegation from the Portuguese top flight, an incident that led to disciplinary action. With the team now in the second division, Nwakali should be seeking a fresh start.

Transfer season: 5 Nigerians who desperately need a move this summer
Photo by IMAGO/Maciej Rogowski

Swiss club FC Luzern are scouting for a successor to midfielder Max Meyer, and Nwakali, who contributed a goal and four assists last season for Chaves, has emerged as a potential target. This isn't Nwakali's first brush with Swiss football; two years ago, a transfer to FC Zurich was almost finalized but ultimately fell through.

Umar Sadiq

Umar Sadiq's time at Real Sociedad appears to be nearing an end. With only 12 starts in 26 appearances, and a meager return of 3 goals and 1 assist, he has fallen behind the likes of Mikel Oyarzabal and Sheraldo Becker in the pecking order at Anoeta.

Transfer season: 5 Nigerians who desperately need a move this summer
Photo by Icon Sport

In search of more playing time to revive his career, a loan move seems the most viable option. Reports suggest Alaves, who recently parted ways with forward Samu Omorodion, are considering Sadiq as a potential replacement.

Victor Osimhen

Despite recently signing a contract extension with Napoli until 2026, African Footballer of the Year Victor Osimhen remains a hot property on the transfer market.

A hefty €130 million release clause sits within his new contract, a price tag some top teams are willing to meet. The Premier League appears to be the most likely destination, with Arsenal and Chelsea leading the race for his signature.

Transfer season: 5 Nigerians who desperately need a move this summer
Photo by Icon Sport

However, reports suggest Osimhen has his sights set on the Emirates, with Arsenal's Premier League title charge last season making them an attractive option for the ambitious striker. Should the Gunners fail to meet Napoli's valuation or make a concrete offer, Osimhen may be swayed by lucrative offers from other potential suitors, including clubs in the Middle East.

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Toyosi Afolayan

Toyosi Afolayan is a sports journalist who breathes life into the games we love. He loves to combine insightful analysis with historical background, creating a richer understanding of sports. Afolayan's expertise ranges from captivating narratives to live broadcasts, captivating audiences across platforms like Ojbsport, AllNigeriaSoccer, TVC Entertainment, Bounce Networks, Kwara TV, ICIR, EaglesTracker, and NFF TV. His background in History and International Studies adds depth, revealing the connections between sports, politics, and national identity.