Ighalo making strong case for United move to be made permanent
Although Odion Ighalo’s deal to Manchester United didn’t include an option for the deal to be made permanent, the striker’s productivity thus far could result in a major change and see his move possibly being made permanent going by Solksjaer’s comments after Thursday’s Europa League round of 16 first leg 5 nil away win against LASK Linz in Austria.
Odion Ighalo scored a stunner and there have been suggestions that his services could be needed by the Old Trafford outfit next season. Speaking shortly after the emphatic win, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said: “Odion has done really well when he’s come in and he’s enjoying himself”.
“He will improve and get better, but he has qualities that we saw in him that we needed and we’ll still need those qualities for next season so let’s see what we do.
“He’s a goalscorer and he’s a striker. He doesn’t worry too much about all that nonsense build-up play — that’s a joke obviously — but he knows his job and what his role in the team is.”
However, one downside of the fixture was that fans were unable to witness Ighalo’s stunner live as the game was played behind closed doors due to the coronavirus pandemic. It was arguably Ighalo’s best goal for Manchester United to date but in an empty stadium.
Ighalo had a goal and an assist in the game and he won the Man of the Match award for his performance. his second in three starts thus far.
Juan Mata was full of praise for the Nigerian after the game: “I think we understand football in the same way. We like to play the same way, passing and moving and giving lines, playing with each other and looking for our forwards in behind like we did with Dan today and with Odion who scored a fantastic goal also.
“So it’s great to have him in the team, Bruno, and also Odion who is scoring in almost every single game that he plays, great guy, and we’re very happy now with them in the team.”
Solkjaer threw more light on the performance: “He is very good back to goal, you can play up to him. Great link player, but maybe the best thing about him is his personality, so he’s got the whole lot really.
“He had three touches before his fourth, the finish. All them touches were high quality but he had to make them to create the space for himself.
“But the strike is on the half-volley, great timing. No-one would have saved that one so anyone would be proud of that finish.”