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ODION IGHALO: FOOTBALL PLAYER, HISTORY MAKER

Favour over labor, that is how Odion Ighalo describes his journey to super star dome.

FOOTBALL PLAYER

The striker started off his career playing for Nigerian Premier Football League teams, Prime and Julius Berger (now known as Osun United Football Club and Bridge Football Club respectively). Between 2007 and 2014 Ighalo played in Norway, Italy and had loan spells in Spain and England for Granada and Watford. He was eventually signed on a permanent deal for Watford.

Ighalo had a fine year in the Championship for Watford helping them to gain promotion into the English Premier League and his run of form continued. He scored 7 goals in 11 games for Watford setting the team record for most goals after 11 games. Odion Ighalo had a fairy tale season that year claiming Player of the Month of December thanks in large part to his 5 goals in that period including a brace in a 3-0 victory against Liverpool. What followed was a disappointing season where he scored just once in the league, eventually moving to Changchun Yatai in the winter window. The Nigerian fan favorite had chosen a part away from the global stage and that coupled with his infamous miss against Argentina in the World Cup group stages which essentially ended his international career saw “the Ighalo stock” drop further.

 

*HISTORY MAKER*

In January of 2020 favor was once again be on Ighalo’s side. Manchester United, in search of a striker to play the role of relieve pitcher called and he answered. On deadline day of the winter window Manchester United completed a loan deal for Odion Ighalo from Shanghai Greenland Shenhua thus making him the first Nigerian to sign for Manchester United.

Ighalo came up big for Manchester United in the Europa and F.A Cup scoring 4 goals in the 3 starts prior to the lock down and helped United get to the Semi Final of both competitions.

Ighalo did not score a Premiere League goal for Manchester United and with Edinson Cavani now in the team, game time has been few and far between. But Nigeria will never forget Odion Ighalo. The first Nigerian to play for what a lot of people agree is the biggest club in world football.

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