Odion Ighalo would be United's most bizarre signing in years

Manchester United’s midweek defeat against Burnley highlighted the dire lack of firepower in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s squad.

Missing out on Erling Haaland and the injury suffered by Marcus Rashford has left United even more short following the failure to replace Alexis Sanchez or Romelu Lukaku in the summer.

In a transfer window which has been characterised by more bungling from Ed Woodward, one of United’s latest reported targets is the most desperate yet.

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Ighalo on the radar?

Sky Sports report that former Watford striker Odion Ighalo is now – baffingly – on United’s radar.

The report says that United are considering a loan swoop for the Nigerian hitman as the club seeks a short term boost to their firepower.

Ighalo joined Chinese club Shanghai Shenhua in 2017, and has 46 goals in 72 Chinese Super League appearances, as per Transfermarkt.

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Poor record in England

Ighalo netted 17 goals in 55 Premier League appearances (Transfermarkt), the majority of which came in the first part of the 2015/16 season.

That’s hardly a record which would get pulses racing if Ighalo was a young player still playing in England and with space to improve.

The fact that he’s 30, has been operating at the lower intensity in China and has been cast off by Watford just adds to the sense that he would be United’s most desperate signing in years.

Solskjaer has supposedly committed to a transfer policy focused on young, British players.

Ighalo would fly in the face of that and signal a new low for a club which is probably at the nadir of Solskjaer’s reign.

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Sam Preston is an NCTJ gold standard news and sports journalist who studied with the Press Association. He also has a 2:1 law with French law degree from the University of Birmingham, which included a year studying at Bordeaux Montaigne University. He is an FA Level 1 football coach who appeared on the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show in 2018 and has also written digital football content and match-day programme pieces for Colchester United, Mansfield Town and Stockport County.