Football News

Top-four target forced Man Utd to sign Odion Ighalo, says Mark Bosnich

By Ben Green

Published: 11:48, 4 February 2020

Former Manchester United goalkeeper Mark Bosnich has suggested Odion Ighalo could have an Eric Cantona-style impact at the club.  

The deadline day swoop for the former Watford marksman certainly left a lot to be desired for Man Utd fans following some of the more eye-catching names they were linked with during the January window.

Could Ighalo emulate Cantona? Five things to know…

  • Man Utd have signed Ighalo from Chinese Super League side Shanghai Shenhua on loan for the rest of the season.
  • The 30-year-old netted 40 goals in exactly 100 appearances for Watford during his previous spell in England.
  • Solskjaer has been in need of frontline reinforcements following an injury sustained by Marcus Rashford.
  • Man Utd fired a third successive Premier League blank on Sunday in a tame 0-0 draw with Wolves.
  • Ex-Man Utd ‘keeper Bosnich has suggested Ighalo can replicate the previous achievements of club legend Cantona.

Ighalo, 30, secured a last-gasp loan move from Shanghai Shenhua to offer Ole Gunnar Solskjaer some much-needed support in the final third following a lengthy injury picked up by Marcus Rashford last month.

The England international is currently recovering from a stress fracture and could face up to two months on the sidelines, which made the signing of a forward in the winter window an essential part of the club’s transfer plans.

Many would have been hoping for a more illustrious signature, but Ighalo proved a prolific goal-getter during his previous stint on these shores, netting an impressive 15 Premier League goals for Watford in 2015/16.

And while the Nigeria international may not be the marquee signing some had wished for, Bosnich believes the experience of Ighalo will stand him in good stead, similar to that of Cantona when he pitched up at Old Trafford.

“This was an emergency signing,” the former United goalkeeper said on Sky Sports.

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“I can understand a lot of people taking about a scatter gun approach, well it had to be with Marcus Rashford being out.

“The top four is still possible for Manchester United, they had to go and get somebody.

“The boy that’s come in (Ighalo) has got nothing to lose, nobody expects anything unbelievable from him but they definitely needed somebody in that position.

“You never know. A long, long time ago Manchester United signed a certain Frenchman (Eric Cantona) who no one really expected much from and he ended up propelling them to one of their most successful seasons of all time.”