Ole Gunnar Solskjaer speaks at a pre-match press conference at the Aon Training Complex

Ole: Ighalo could earn a permanent move

Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has left the door open for Odhion Ighalo to earn a permanent contract with the club, when his loan from Shanghai Greenland Shenhua expires in the summer.

The striker could make his United debut when we face Chelsea at Stamford Bridge tomorrow night [Monday] and the manager has challenged the Nigerian to make his mark during his time with the Reds.

“It's a loan, but when you're in the door and if you impress it gives you a chance,”
said Solskjaer at his pre-match press conference.

“That's exactly the same for everyone who signs if it's permanent or it's a loan. If you impress as a player, if you impress as a person, if you can help this group improve, then of course there's a chance that we'll look at extending things.
“That doesn't just go for Odion, but since you asked, yes, of course his incentive is to play as well as he can. And it's up to us to make sure that he'd want to stay if we wanted him.

“I think he's probably pinching himself at times, because he's now at his favourite club at the age of 30.

“Hopefully he'll prove to you what I think he will. He's a proven goalscorer, so he'll do all right.”

The Nigerian wasn’t the only addition to our squad in January, after we signed Portuguese international Bruno Fernandes from Sporting Lisbon.

The midfielder produced a Man-of-the-Match display on his United debut against Wolverhampton Wanderers and the boss is hoping he can build on that performance tomorrow.

“I'm very happy with the two guys we've brought in,”
said Ole.
“To finally have got Bruno over the line, to have signed him after following him for so long, just seeing what he can give us and what he will give us, it has been great. It will be good to integrate Odion as well.”

The Reds currently trail Chelsea by six points in the Premier League, meaning victory would put us back within touching distance of the Champions League spots.

Although qualification for Europe's premier club competition is the aim this season, the manager still believes players will be attracted to Old Trafford, even if we finish outside the top four.

“It's a prestigious tournament to be in of course,”
said the manager.
“If we play well for the rest of the season and players that we might want are impressed by that, it might be easier to convince them to come here.

“If we are with or without the Champions League next season, I wouldn't say that's the be-all and end-all for a player to sign for us.”


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