Former Manchester United goalkeeper Mark Bosnich believes that new signing Odion Ighalo could have an Eric Cantona-like impact on the Red Devils after his January arrival.
The striker signed for United on a loan deal on Deadline Day arriving from Chinese Super League side Shanghai Shenhua in a bid to bolster their attacking options.
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Gary Neville has questioned Manchester United's transfer strategy following the loan signing of Odion Ighalo 👀😬 'Ighalo? They just needed a body in there. I can't let the club off the hook though. They've had nine months to sign a striker but the fact that the club were in that position knowing Sanchez and Lukaku were leaving for many months shows you that United are struggling to navigate the transfer market.' #mufc
Ighalo had a previous spell in the Premier League with Watford where he impressed in his first season in the English top-flight scoring 15 goals, but struggled in his second, finding the net just once in 18 games.
The 30-year-old has notched up an impressive 46 goals in 74 games since his arrival in China. United have failed to find the net in their last three Premier League outings, so he could be the answer to their attacking issues in Marcus Rashford’s absence.
Bosnich, who played for United during two spells, feels that Ighalo could surprise people with his arrival. The former Australian goalkeeper even outlined that he could have an impact similar to that of Eric Cantona when he arrived at the club from Leeds in November 1992.
“This was an emergency signing,” the former United goalkeeper said on Sky Sports News.
“I can understand a lot of people talking about a scattergun 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.
✍ #MUFC can confirm that Odion Ighalo will join us on loan from Shanghai Shenhua until the end of the season.
Welcome, Odion! 🔴
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) February 1, 2020
“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.”
Ighalo’s impact may not quite reach Cantona levels.
But Solskjaer and the United faithful will be hoping he, along with fellow new arrival Bruno Fernandes, can be the spark which propels them into the top four.
United’s draw with Wolves at the weekend means that they sit seventh in the Premier League table and six points off Tottenham in fourth.