- Victor Osimhen has broken his silence following the TikTok video controversy that attacked his reputation and led to the resignation of Napoli's chief social media executive, Alessio Fortino.
Osimhen has released his first public statement since the week-long saga that unfolded, which caused significant turmoil within the club's social media department and the fanbase.
The controversy was ignited when a video surfaced on Napoli's official TikTok account highlighting Osimhen's missed penalty during their goalless draw against Bologna.
Although the video was later removed from the club's TikTok platform due to widespread criticism from fans, many of Osimhen's supporters felt that the club had unjustly forgotten his pivotal role in securing Napoli's first league title in 33 years during the 2022/23 season.
Amidst speculations of Osimhen's potential departure from the club, his representative, Roberto Calenda, stated on Tuesday night via X (formerly known as Twitter).
Osimhen's agent expressed his dismay at the incident, asserting, "What happened today on Napoli's official profile on the TikTok platform is not acceptable."
Calenda emphasized the harm inflicted on Osimhen and decried the unjust treatment the player had endured through media trials and the spread of false information. He concluded with a stern warning, stating, "We reserve the right to take legal action and any useful initiative to protect Victor Osimhen."
However, contrary to expectations that Osimhen's response would be confrontational, the striker reaffirmed his loyalty to Napoli and called upon the fans to unite.
Osimhen dismissed allegations of racism among Neapolitans and expressed his satisfaction with his three-year stay in the city.
He credited the passion of Neapolitans as the driving force behind his commitment to giving his all on the field and declared unwavering pride in wearing the Napoli badge.
Addressing the allegations, Osimhen clarified, "The accusations against the People of Naples are untrue. I have a lot of friends that are Neapolitans and have become part of my family and everyday life."
Expressing gratitude to Nigerians and others who had shown their support, Osimhen concluded with a call for unity, respect, and understanding.
Osimhen's full statement:
"Coming to the City of Naples in 2020 was a wonderful decision for me. The People of Naples have shown me so much love and kindness, and I will not allow anyone to come between us.
"The passion of the People of Naples fuels my fire to always play with my heart and soul, and the love for the badge is unwavering as I wear it with pride.
"The accusations against the People of Naples are untrue. I have a lot of friends who are Neapolitans and have become part of my family and everyday life. I appreciate Nigerians and everyone for lending their voices to support and reach out to me. Thanks so much, I'm forever grateful.
"Let's continue to spread unity, respect, and understanding.
"FORZA NAPOLI SEMPRE"