|Image from Planet Football|
Football season is upon us and the rumour mill for transfers and for the upcoming season are up and running. For Manchester United the question posed would be Odion Ighalo who has quickly become quite the cult hero at Manchester United be offered a permeant contract? There are lots of opinions fuelling speculation as to whether the loanee should be signed on a permanent basis or not.
It was no doubt the shock of the January transfer window, when it was announced on deadline day that the former Watford striker will be joining the Red Devils on loan from Chinese Super League side Shanghai Greenland Shenhua. The forward was brought in as emergency cover for the injured Marcus Rashford with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer only having Anthony Martial at his disposal as a number nine option. Ighalo has however, shown that he is not around to simply make up the numbers, scoring four goals and assisting once in just three starts for the club. His left-footed strike against LASK will no doubt go down as one of United’s goals of the season with the Nigerian showcasing his clinical nature in-front of goal. It hasn’t just been his stats that have impressed either, with his hold-up play and ability to bring attackers into the game also catching the eye. Lets review his Professional Career Stats in the English Premier League:
Full Name: Odion Jude Ighalo
Born: 16 June 1989
Watford: 2015 to 2017 – 99 Appearances and 39 Goals
Manchester United: 2020 – 8 Appearances and 4 Goals
Ighalo has offered the Red Devils a new dimension in attack, with the midfield feeding the ball into his feet as opposed to continuously playing it in-behind for direct runners. United’s second goal against Manchester City at the start of March came from the Nigerian’s crisp touch and composure whilst being in possession, with his experience on the field clearly showing. Despite being 30 years of age, the club are now being linked with a permanent move for Ighalo. As per the Mail Online, United are prepared to pay £20m to acquire his services, which could prove to be quite the coup. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer clearly needs to add more quality to his squad if they are aiming to compete for a top three finish next season. This means bolstering his options to compete on all fronts, and signing Ighalo on a permanent basis could prove to be a shrewd piece of business. Signing Jadon Sancho type player would likely cost in the region of £100m, leaving little room for another big money signing. United do need to lift some goal-scoring weight off the back of Rashford and Martial’s shoulders, with Ighalo looking like an ideal option to have in rotation.
Fans would welcome his arrival, but only if big money would be spent elsewhere. The Nigerian has shown his worth and most notably, his desire in representing the badge, leaving little risk with this potential deal. The possibility of signing Harry Kane from Spurs is another rumour circulating and if this proves to be case I doubt Manchester United would sign Ighalo on a permanent basis. Ighalo has expressed his desire to finish his career at the Red Devils and I really do believe he would be an asset to the team even if a marque big name player is signed in the summer.