Manchester United’s loan sensation Odion Ighalo has revealed he “never imagined” playing for his boyhood club.
The Nigeria striker, 30, has been in blistering form since sealing his shock switch from Chinese outfit Shanghai Shenhua on Deadline Day in January.
Former Watford forward Ighalo has netted four goals in his last five outings, including a stunner in United’s 5-0 Europa League thrashing of Austrian side LASK last Thursday.
Not only did the move come as a surprise to the football fraternity, but Ighalo – who grew up supporting the Premier League giants – also never thought he’d ever represent the famous Red Devils.
“When you say those kinds of things (about the prospect of playing for United when he was a child), people say ‘are you crazy?’ because back then you don’t even know what the future holds,” the striker told beIN Sports .
“First you just want to go outside the country to start playing – even for a small team, not even to talk of going to United.
“But my support for the team was great. I tried to see every game of United every weekend if possible. I still remember those memories.
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“I never imagined it was going to turn out this way. Even when I played in the Premier League for Watford, I never thought this was going to happen.”
Last week Ole Gunnar Solskjaer hailed Ighalo for the wonder strike that sparked Manchester United’s rampant European victory.
Ighalo set United on their way with a stunning strike and set up Dan James for the second goal, with Solskjaer admitting the 30-year-old loan signing is playing his way to landing a permanent deal.
“The boys were fantastic, they deserve a lot of praise and credit for the way they went about the job,” said Solskjaer.
“There was a lot of quality in our finishing, some fantastic goals and a lot of football we should be proud of.
“Odion has done really well since he’s come in. He will improve and get better and has qualities we saw in him that we needed and they are qualities we will still need next season.
“He’s a goalscorer and a striker. He knows his job and what his role is in the team.
“He’s very good with his back to goal and a good link player, but best thing about him is his personality. He’s got the lot, really.
“He had three touches before he hit the ball and all were high quality to make space for himself. The strike on the half-volley was great timing, no-one would have saved that.”Copyright © 2021 Completesports.com All rights reserved. The information contained in Completesports.com may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without the prior written authority of Completesports.com.