Llius Cortes’ side have secured the services of the Nigerian forward for the next three years after her earlier impressive loan spell
Asisat Oshoala is excited about her future at Barcelona after securing a permanent deal at the Catalan club, which runs until June 2022.
The 24-year-old shone brightly with Llius Cortes’ ladies in her brief loan move from Chinese Women’s Super League side Dalian Quanjian in January.
During her four-month loan spell, she scored eight goals in 11 outings, including Barcelona’s first Uefa Women’s Champions League final goal, in a 4-1 loss to Lyon two weeks ago.
Despite the team’s failed title bid, the forward’s increasing importance to the Spanish outfit was underlined by Friday’s news of her permanent deal, reportedly worth 20,000 euros.
“It’s a great move for me and I’m delighted about it,” Oshoala told Goal.
“It’s an interesting journey to look up to. I’m looking forward to having a memorable season and a great time with the team [Barcelona].
“I’m not promising the team a league [Liga Iberdrola] title but obviously I mean a better fight and toughen the team to able to challenge for titles.
“It just happened for me the way it happened [in our final match against Lyon]. I was happy to be able to do my job as a striker.
“It was a good day in the office for me as an individual to come off the bench and score but it was not for us the team. I still believe we could have achieved more in the final as a team.”
Upon her arrival in Spain in January, Oshoala became an instant hit when she came off the bench and scored a minute later in her side’s 4-0 win at Rayo Vallecano.
She spent the best part of a month on the sidelines with a hamstring injury, but bounced back to help the Spanish giants reach its maiden elite European competition final in Budapest, where she made history for Africa.
While other Africans struggled on arrival, the FC Robo product flourished and has further revealed the secrets behind her early adaption to life in Spain.
“It’s been an interesting experience so far. It’s a great country to play football,” she continued.
“Great place to play football. For me, it’s just about how people understand the game and we adapt to the new environment differently.
“My teammates made it easy for me and the environment was acceptable and friendly. I’ve played in Europe before, so probably it wasn’t like my first time.”
The three-time African Women’s Footballer of the Year failed to hit her best form at the 2018 African Women’s Cup of Nations in Ghana, scoring three goals in five games – her worst ever outing.
Although Nigeria won the championship, Oshoala was pipped by South Africa’s Thembi Kgatlana to the top scorer and best player awards, and later the prize for best in Africa for 2018.
On the back of her forgettable outing in Ghana, the maiden BBC Women’s Footballer of the Year shared the important lessons and fulfilment she gained from the tournament.
“Ghana wasn’t the best tournament for me in terms of scoring goals but winning the trophy was the most important,” she admitted.
“If you can’t score goals, make sure you help to team to win games and trophies. That’s exactly what I told myself at the tournament in Ghana.
“Even at my worse, I felt like we still had a great outing at the tournament as a team but not as an individual which is normal sometimes. These things happen normally for professional footballers.
“I will come back stronger is what has actually occupied my mind to work one. Ghana is Ghana. It’s gone and already history.”
With her club future settled, Oshoala is likely to be a crucial part of any success Nigeria will hope to achieve when the Women’s World Cup commences in France on June 7.