Odion Ighalo is set to leave Manchester at the end of his loan spell, which was upto May 31. Shanghai Shenhua, the Chinese parent club, want the striker back ahead of the start of the Chinese Super League 2020 season.
The Nigerian had a brief period at Old Trafford on a loan deal, which came on the final day of the January transfer window.
He has been the subject of contention between the clubs from Manchester and Shanghai. It was reported that Shenhua made £400,000-a-week offer, after Ighalo’s hugely successful Premier League start. It was reported that United offered the half of the amount, and the 30-year-old Nigerian was reportedly ready to forego the half of the pay, as he was interested in continuing at Old Trafford.
Nigerian’s loan spell looks set to end after eight appearances, as the Premier League halted because of Coronavirus outbreak. But as the season start delayed and Marcus Rashford being fit and available once again, United are not in rush to hand Ighalo a forceful proposal to keep him in Premier League.
Premier League will now extend well beyond the earlier plan and should be completed by July 31. United still have nine Premier League games to play and remain in the Europa League and the FA Cup. That was the reason they were interested in holding Ighalo till end of the season, extending his loan deal.
The loanee scored four goals in eight appearances in all competitions. If he departs, he will go down in the Old Trafford history as a player who scored a goal in all the matches he featured in starting eleven.
The initial loan came at a time when the CSL season was yet to begin and China was the epicentre of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the Chinese authorities are now hopeful of beginning the Chinese Super League season in late June or early July, and as a result his club are keen to have the 30-year-old striker back in the fold.