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Football Reporting


‘An honor I will forever cherish’ – Ighalo bids farewell to Manchester United

The Nigerian striker scored five times for the Red Devils last term before seeing his playing time diminish in 2020-21

Odion Ighalo has bid farewell to Manchester United in a post on Instagram, saying his time at Old Trafford was an honor he will forever cherish.

The Nigerian striker’s loan with United will come to an end on January 31, and he is set to return to Chinese club Shanghai Shenhua.

The 31-year-old initially linked up with the Red Devils in January 2020 and saw his loan extended after a strong start to life at Old Trafford.

But Ighalo has found minutes hard to come by this season, and he has made just four appearances in all competitions.

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In a heartfelt post on Instagram, Ighalo expressed his gratitude to those at Old Trafford who helped make his year at the club memorable.

“It’s so hard to see this dream come to an end. But I give God the glory for helping me fulfill this lifelong dream of putting on a Manchester United shirt as a player and represent this great club, it was indeed an honor I will forever cherish and be grateful for,” he said.

“To the manager I say thank you for trusting and believing in me when many did not, to my amazing team-mates I will miss you guys, it was always fun and a time I look forward to training and spending time with all of you. And I pray we win the LEAGUE and FA Cup this year.

“To the best fans in the world (the Manchester United fans) we have missed you, but we hear your voices cheering us on from afar, we can’t wait to have you all back on the stands.

“I’m still and would remain a MANCHESTER UNITED FAN forever. Once a Red, always a Red. Thank you Manchester United and God bless.”

Ighalo is set to have plenty of suitors, with one of his representatives telling BBC Sport earlier this month: “I can confirm that some Premier League clubs, two teams outside of England and some clubs in the Middle East have made formal enquiries.”

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Previously, Ighalo had opened the door to a move to Major League Soccer.

“Of course, he said [in an interview] that the MLS could be interesting, but that is just an option outside of the strong interest received so far,” his representative added.

“For now, he’s still a Man Utd player on loan from China where he still has a contract. He could stay in England where his family is based or try something new because he has many options to mull over.”

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