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Manchester United sign striker Odion Ighalo on loan

United are close to a surprise loan for the former Watford striker

2019 CFA Cup Final - Shanghai Greenland Shenhua v Shandong Luneng Taishan Photo by VCG/VCG via Getty Images

UPDATE: Manchester United have confirmed that they have signed Nigerian striker Odion Ighalo on loan from Shanghai Greenland Shenhua until the end of the season.

The transfer window is just hours away from closing and Manchester United are still in the market for strikers.

It is being reported that a deal in principle has been reached with 30-year-old striker Odion Ighalo who plays for Shanghai Shenhua in the Chinese Super League. It has been three years since Ighalo last played in the Premier League with Watford.

Sky reporter Fabrizio Romano sent a message out on Twitter that read “Man United have reached an agreement with Odion Ighalo on personal terms and salary.

“Now Man Utd are in contact with Shanghai Shenhua to find an agreement – possible loan + buy option. But just 2.30 hours left before the window will be closed… time is key.”

The Chinese Super League announced this morning that the start of the season is being delayed due to the Coronavirus outbreak so even if the two sides can reach an agreement, it is unclear if the Nigerian striker can even travel to Manchester at this point.

Another issue to work out is Ighalo’s salary. Currently, he makes £300,000-a-week and United want to pay a third of that (£100,000-per-week) figure while he is on their books.

United will also pay a loan fee of between £2m and £4m to borrow the Nigeria international for the rest of the campaign.

Ighalo raced to the top of Solskjaer striker want list after negations earlier today with Bournemouth striker Josh King reached an impasse over price.

It sounds like this deal will come down to the wire. The transfer window closes at 11 PM GMT on Friday.