‘He is a proven goalscorer’ – Solskjaer lauds Ighalo’s impact against Norwich City

    Impressed with his display against the Canaries, the Red Devils boss claims the Nigerian forward has given him the chance to rotate his squad

    Odion Ighalo is looming as a crucial figure in Manchester United’s attacking setup with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer praising the striker as a proven goalscorer.

    The 31-year-old continued his excellent form with a goal as the Red Devils saw off Norwich City 2-1 after extra-time in Saturday’s FA Cup quarter-final game.

    After a goalless first-half at Carrow Road, Ighalo handed the visitors the lead in the 51st minute with his first shot of the game to seal Luke Shaw’s fine attacking move.

    He now has five goals in four starts for the Premier League giants scoring in each of those games since his loan move from Chinese Super League outfit Shanghai Shenhua.

    Nevertheless, the Canaries levelled matters through Todd Cantwell in the 75th minute as the fixture extended to extra-time.

    With proceedings drawing closer to be decided by penalties, captain Harry Maguire scored the winner in the 118th minute to book the Red Devils a place in the last four.

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    Captivated by the ex-Watford man’s performance, Solskjaer reserved some kind words for the former Nigeria international.

    “It is great to have the option to rotate,” he told BBC Sport.

    “Anthony Martial came on and did brilliant but Odion gives me a chance to rotate and he is a proven goalscorer and played his part in both goals.

    “He is a great person to have around the dressing room too.”

    “It was very important (to keep him at the club), that was important for me and we worked hard to do it,” he continued.

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    “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.”

    United who are now unbeaten in their last 14 games across all competitions are guests of Brighton and Hove Albion in Tuesday’s Premier League encounter before welcoming Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth on Saturday.

    Victory for them in those games would be crucial as they continue their chase for a place in Europe next term. Currently, they are sixth in the log having collected 49 points from 31 league outings.

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