Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says ‘there’s a chance’ that Manchester United could make the loan signing of Odion Ighalo permanent.
The Nigerian international joined the club on deadline day from Chinese Super League side Shanghai Shenhua, joining on a loan deal until the end of the season as the club looked to bolster their attacking options.
Ighalo returns to the Premier League following a previous spell at Watford and is likely to be included in United’s squad ahead of their clash with Chelsea tonight, the 30-year-old having trained with his new teammates for the first time on Sunday.
The club’s late capture of Ighalo was greeted with criticism with many viewing the signing as an act of desperation on the final day of the window, though Solskjaer has left the door open for the forward to join on a permanent basis should he impress over the second half of the season.
“It’s a loan, but when you’re in the door and if you impress it gives you a chance,” Solskjaer said at his pre-match press conference.
“That’s exactly the same for everyone who signs if it’s permanent or it’s a loan. If you impress as a player, if you impress as a person, if you can help this group improve, then of course there’s a chance that we’ll look at extending things.
“That doesn’t just go for Odion, but since you asked, yes, of course his incentive is to play as well as he can. And it’s up to us to make sure that he’d want to stay if we wanted him.
“I think he’s probably pinching himself at times, because he’s now at his favourite club at the age of 30.
“Hopefully he’ll prove to you what I think he will. He’s a proven goalscorer, so he’ll do all right.”
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