April 13, 2021

Forget Iheanacho, Simy is Nigeria’s deadliest striker in Europe

Forget Iheanacho, Simy is Nigeria’s deadliest striker in Europe

Simy Nwankwo of Crotone celebrates with teammate Milos Vulic after scoring their side’s first goal during the Serie A match against SSC Napoli at Stadio Diego Armando Maradona on April 03, 2021, in Naples, Italy. Photo: AFP

• Crotone striker scored more goals than Ronaldo, Lewandowski and Iheanacho over the past month

Crotone’s Nigerian-born striker Simeon ‘Simy’ Nwankwo, has been rated the most decisive striker in Europe’s top football leagues over the past month after scoring eight goals between March 3 and April 3, even as his Italian club fights to avoid relegation to Serie B.

Simy has scored 1eight goals in Serie A over the past month, exceeding the feats by some of the world’s best strikers such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Robert Lewandowski, Erling Håland, and Karim Benzema.

Bayern Munich’s Lewandowski has seven goals over the same period while Real Madrid’s Benzema has six. Ronaldo (Juventus), Gerard Moreno (Villarreal), and Simy’s compatriot Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City) have each found the net five times over the same period. A little lower in the ranking, Messi (Barcelona), Lorenzo Insigne (Napoli), Dusan Vlahovic (Fiorentina) and Håland (Borussia Dortmund) have scored only four league goals each over the past month.

Since the start of the season, Simy has scored 15 Serie A goals, behind Ronaldo (25), Romelu Lukaku (21) and Luis Muriel (18).

Crotone’s season is not going well and they are one of the favourites to be relegated after garnering just four wins and three draws after 29 matches.

But with 28-year-old Simy, who featured for Nigeria at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, scoring eight of their 12 goals in the last month, and becoming only the third African player in Serie A history to have scored at least one goal in five games in a row – a feat only previously achieved by George Weah in 1996 and Keita Balde in 2017 – Crotone may just end up defying the odds and avoid relegation.

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