Super Eagles striker Odion Ighalo has revealed why he moved on from Watford to Chinese side Changchun Yatai after West Bromwich Albion’s interest came to nothing.
Ighalo admitted that his move to China was to save his career at the expense of his love for the English Premier League.
Ighalo, whose last season with the Hornets was far from the standards he set in his debut campaign in the EPL, revealed that he struggled to cope with the new systems of the new manager Walter Mazzarri at Watford.
“I moved (to China) because that was what was best for me,” Ighalo revealed during an interview with Sky Sports.
“West Brom did not meet Watford valuation but when the Chinese offered £20m, it was not bad cash for Watford.
“My second season in the Premier League was not that great, we had a new manager and new system, which meant I played on the left and sometimes on the right. It was difficult, everything was not going right and I did not find it easy.
“I did not get much playing time and so I had to leave, and it didn’t matter where I went to.
“I didn’t want problem with my manager. It was difficult for me as I wanted to stay in the Premier League.
“I had a great time with Watford, from the Championship to Premier League.
“The fans still close to my heart, the players.
“Troy Deeney is a great guy, in and out of dressing room, a fighter, who chases every ball. It was a pleasure to play alongside him and my connection with him was exceptional.
“I wake up 3am in China to watch Watford play, they are great team with a great manager, they can only get better.”
Ighalo, who missed NIgeria’s final 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier against Algeria on Friday and the international friendly against Argentina due to a knee injury, also advised Jack Wilshere to leave Arsenal in order to get more first-team football if he wants to play at the World Cup.
“For him (Wilshere) to get more games and to be ready for the World Cup, he has to play more so if he’s still there and he’s not getting the opportunities to play, I’d advise him to leave,” Ighalo said .
“He’s a very good player, he can’t be there sitting on the bench. If he cannot play at Arsenal, he can play at any other big team in the Premier League.”