It’s clear to see that Manchester United aren’t the same English Premier League giants they once were but, we should also take note that club is currently attempting to rebuild past success. This development doesn’t just stop at the players, the coaches and management are also adapting to life at Manchester United.   

A Fresh face   

Nigerian forward Odion Ighalo was so eager to join the Manchester United squad that the 30-year old took a pay cut to join the team.  

Currently signed by Shanghai Shenhua, Ighalo has joined Manchester United on loan until the end of the season and it was the easiest decision of his life. As an avid fan of United since he was a young lad, the ex-Watford player was left in tears upon the announcement that United had signed him and has even received a pay-cut because of this decision. 

“A few other clubs had shown interest, I said: ‘Please, just pick United, if it’s going to be possible,'” he said. Speaking to BBC Sport News. 

He added: “At 11 pm in Shanghai, my agent called me [to say] that United want to do the deal, so I woke up that night and started looking for a translator to go to the directors’ room and hit his door.

”’My agent wants to speak to you. United are coming for me, you have to make this happen.'”

It’s an interesting climate to join the United strike-force so the agents and club working through the night to get the deal signed for a 7 am deadline was crucial. Multiple clubs were also interested in Ighalo but his passion for United had already set the decision in stone. 

“I told my agent ‘this is what I want. I want to come here’,” he said.

“His agent said: ‘You’re going to get a pay cut to go to United.’

“I said: ‘I don’t care. Make this deal happen. I want to go to United. I don’t care how much is the pay cut, I know that, make it happen.'”

With United’s attack force weakened due to the loss Rashford to injury and given the fact that Martial has scored just once in his previous five games, Ighalo hopes to provide United with physicality in the strike force and help produce more goals. 

Ighalo has already been named in the starting lineup ahead of their Europa League clash with Club Brugge

The bookmakers Europa League favorites 

Although United may have no luck with their Premier League odds, they’ve been tipped as favorites to win the Europa League at +500. Jose Mourinho led Manchester United to their last Europa Trophy win back in 2017 and were also favorites to pick up the trophy in that year too. 

Originally, I believe the bookmaker may have United priced as favorites due to their status rather than form. That said, with the arrival of Ighalo and the eventual return of Marcus Rashford… maybe Martial, Rashford and Ighalo could be a force in Europe. 

United will face Club Brugge in the beginning of the last 32 bracket that will be held in Belgium for the first leg.

  • United 11/1
  • Sevilla 6/1
  • Inter Milan 7/1
  • Arsenal 7/1
  • Ajax 8/1
  • Wolves 12/1


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