Solskjaer's message to his strikers
Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wants his strikers to go for goal, adopting a similar shoot-on-sight policy to the one he had in his playing days.
Odion Ighalo will be one of four options available to the boss in attack after extending his loan spell until January 2021, and he told the MUTV Group Chat that Ole was upset with him despite a two-goal haul in the Emirates FA Cup win at Derby County before lockdown.
The Reds may have cruised to a 3-0 victory against the Rams, to set up a delayed quarter-final tie with Norwich City, but Solskjaer wanted Ighalo to have a hat-trick to his name at Pride Park.
The last United player to score a treble was Zlatan Ibrahimovic, against Saint-Etienne in the Europa League in February 2017, while the most recent hat-trick at Premier League level was Robin van Persie's famous demolition of Aston Villa to seal the title way back in 2013.
Hopefully, there will be another one along soon.
Ole wants his strikers to quench their thirst for goals and start racking them up by being single minded, when presented with opportunities to shoot.
“Of course, I think it's more beneficial for us strikers because we have a former striker as coach,” explained Ighalo.
“I know that. Even in some games we play, he calls you to talk to you. Like I remember at the Derby game, I scored two goals and he called me to say: 'You're the striker. You're supposed to score three goals in this game!
“It's important. I needed to shoot. I had Juan Mata who called me and I was rolling the ball back. He said: 'No, as a striker, in that place, you should shoot. Always try to shoot to the goal. It doesn't matter if the keeper touches it, aim for your target and shoot.
“So I benefit a lot from him - the way he talks in training and the way he wants me to move and to keep the ball and all that. It's very good.”
Ighalo joins the MUTV Group Chat!Video
Marcus Rashford has had the most shots in the Premier League for the Reds this term (65), six clear of Anthony Martial.
In all competitions, during the 2019/20 season, Rashford leads the way with 91 shots, followed by Martial (71), Andreas Pereira (59) and Mason Greenwood (58).
Ighalo appreciates the high-quality competition for places in attack, with each forward bringing something different to the party.
“I will start with Greenwood,” the Nigerian told us.
“He's a very good player. I think I used to see with my eyes he's looking like Robin van Persie. He can shoot with both feet, he's a very intelligent player, young and is not afraid.
“Anto is a very skilful, good striker who scores goals. Marcus always wants the ball. He can run behind defenders. He can come and get the ball to feet and shoot from any angle.
“These guys are very good, very young guys and I'm grateful to be playing with this set of strikers.”