Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has heaped praises on Nigerian striker following his display against Norwich City in the FA Cup on Saturday.
The 31-year-old continued his goalscoring form in cup competitions with the opener as the Red Devils saw off the Canaries 2-1 after extra-time in Saturday’s quarter-final.
Ighalo fired the visitors into the lead early in the second half, but Todd Cantwell, who’d looked sharp through the match, equalised in the 75th minute for Norwich.
Solskjaer told BBC Sport: “It is great to have the option to rotate. Anthony Martial came on and did brilliant, but Odion gives me a chance to rotate.
“He’s a proven goalscorer and played his part in both goals,” the Norwegian coach continued. “He is a great person to have around the dressing room too.
“Odion knows how much we value him in and around the dressing room; he’s a goalscorer, a poacher, he’s strong, we can play the ball into him, he showed for the second and Paul [Pogba] found him.”
Ighalo has five goals in four Manchester United starts – three of them in the FA Cup – and amid irrational rotation at Norwich there was rationale in recalling.
Despite failing to register a goal in six Premier League matches, Ighalo has scored three goals in the FA Cup and one in the Europa League as he made a strong first impression on his new fans after joining on loan from Shanghai Shenhua.
In Ighalo’s last start before this weekend, he scored one and contributed an assist as United thumped LASK 5-0 away in Europe, form which prompted United to extend his loan deal until early 2021.