Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says Odion Ighalo can make an instant impact for Manchester United – despite not having trained with the squad.
Ighalo, signed on loan from Shanghai Shenhua until the end of the season, will join up with his new team-mates on Sunday, ahead of Monday’s Premier League trip to Chelsea.
The striker has been working away from United’s AON Training Complex for the past two weeks as a precaution against the coronavirus, following his arrival from China.
United moved to sign Ighalo on deadline day as cover for top scorer Marcus Rashford, who is out for at least three months with a double stress fracture of the back.
Despite Ighalo not having trained with United, who have returned from a warm weather training camp in Spain, Solskajer said he can have an impact from the bench at Stamford Bridge.
“Well, it didn’t take me too long,” said Solskjaer. “I didn’t need to have a training session to come on.
“As a striker, you get thrown on out there and it might be that he’ll have to come off the bench to give us a goal.
“He’ll be involved with us and travel down with us. Now he’s out of that two-week [incubation] precaution period we made, let’s see if he’s involved or not.
“We’ve kept in touch with him. We’ve done our own programme, he’s done his, and it was always going to be a case of him having to integrate with us, having been out in China.
“He needs to get used to the players, the team, up to speed as quick as he can, he’s been working really hard.
“I think he’s been pinching himself at times, being at his favourite club at the age of 30, but he’s earned that one and hopefully he impresses us so we can see him play.
“He was the top scorer at the African Cup of Nations last year, so he can help the club, he’s very professional, a good lad and will give something to the group.”
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