Odion Ighalo has impressed since his January loan move to Manchester United and his personal trainer has discussed whether the Nigerian would like to stay at Old Trafford or return to Shanghai Shenhua.
The on-loan striker’s contract ends in a matter of weeks and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side have not agreed an extension with Chinese Super League side Shenhua – who want the former Watford man back before the start of their season.
Although his immediate future is uncertain, trainer Ekemini Ekerette confirmed that the 30-year-old is desperate to stay with the club.
“He’s a team player and has been talking about [Marcus] Rashford, [Anthony] Martial, [Mason] Greenwood, and how fantastic they all are, so he’s looking forward to hopefully getting to play with Rashford,” Ekerette told Goal.
“He wants to stay and loves United, Ole [Gunnar Solskjaer] and the fans and he would love to be a Red for the rest of his life.”
The boyhood United fan Ighalo spent much of the lockdown keeping fit in Lagos and his trainer claims he is in peak condition for when the season restarts.
Ekerette added: “He’s a wonderful athlete, I’ve never seen someone more passionate about their job than him.
“I think he’s in excellent physical condition. He loves the game. He just wants to train. Even if the league wasn’t going to play in the next three months he would keep training every day. He is so disciplined.
“His future was not making a difference to his intensity in training. He is just always focused on making sure he’s doing what he needs to do and then pushing himself even further.”
Ekerette believes Ighalo’s training means he is ready to start Premier League games when matches resume under ‘Project Restart’.
“He’s a beast and he is ready to go right back into the game. He is a very passionate guy and you can tell that in the way he trains,” Ekerette said.
“Solskjaer has been happy with him from what Ighalo has told me but he always thinks and knows he can do more and he’s ready to give more.
“We’ve been working on a lot of strength work and then he’s been able to do ball drills too.”