Nigeria has plenty of athletes that achieve success not only domestically, but also internationally. Last week, the Nigerian striker Odion Ighalo joined the ranks of the most respected football players as he was signed by Manchester United. Here is everything you need to know.
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1. Who is Odion Ighalo?
Odion Ighalo was born on June 16, 1989, in Lagos, Nigeria and grew up in Edo. From a young age, he was very interested in football and proved to be a gifted player at two Nigerian clubs, Prime and Julius Berger, before getting signed to Norway’s Lyn in 2007.
Since then, his career has only moved upwards. Throughout over a decade of his football history, Odion Ighalo has played for Italy’s Udinese, Spain’s Granada, England’s Watford before getting signed up to Shanghai Greenland Shenhua in February of 2019. Odion also reported turning down an offer from Barcelona before joining the Shanghai club, which makes him one of the most coveted players of the past few years.
2. Why did Manchester United sign him?
Last week, Manchester United made the somewhat unexpected decision to sign Odion Ighalo. It’s worth noting that Ighalo joined Man Utd on a loan from Shanghai Greenland Shenhua and he will spend one season with his new team. In the agreement between Manchester United, Shanghai Greenland Shenhua, and Odion Ighalo, there was no option to buy at the end of the season, which means that once his Man Utd sting is over, Odion will return to Shanghai Greenland Shenhua to complete his time there.
The Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could not contain his excitement of signing Odion Ighalo. He said that Odion was exactly the type of centre-forward player the team needed right now and that he was a very professional team member who will make the most of his time there.
3. How did Odion Ighalo react?
Over the weekend, Odion Ighalo arrived in Manchester from China to begin his training for Manchester United. Odion admitted that joining Man Utd was his dream since he was just a kid and that he was very excited to play for the team. Odion Ighalo made no secret out of his admiration for Manchester United: back in 2016, he said that he wouldn’t say no if Man Utd invited him to play, and when he still was a young football player in Nigeria, he was photographed in a Man Utd jersey.
Odion Ighalo @ighalojude (2016): “I’m not sure I’d say no if United called. They were my team growing up. I loved watching Andy Cole and Dwight Yorke on TV.
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