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Ighalo believes Osimhen is ‘future of Nigerian football’


Odion Ighalo believes Victor Osimhen has huge potential, with the Manchester United striker praising his compatriot as the “future of Nigerian football,” reports

Osimhen, 21, has been in superb form for Lille, scoring 18 goals in 38 games for the Ligue 1 club this season.The Nigerian’s form has seen him linked with a big-money move this summer, with the likes of Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Barcelona reportedly interested.

United have also been linked with Osimhen, and while the young forward is not understood to be on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s shortlist this summer, Ighalo’s relationship with the 21-year-old could prove beneficial should the Red Devils decide to made a move.

Ighalo has revealed that Osimhen came to United’s Europa League tie against Club Brugge in Belgium with the pair swapping shirts, and has spoken of the close bond between the Lagos-born duo.


“I talk to Osimhen, he’s a very nice boy, young, he’s a good guy,” Ighalo told Elegbete TV. “We talk, not almost every day, but almost every time I advise him. He’s the future of Nigerian football. He’s the future, he’s going to do so well in football.

“I always advise him to keep calm, keep working hard and the guy is going to be a celebrity, you know.

“He came to watch our game against Club Brugge in Belgium because it’s closer to where he lives, he messaged me he was going to come so I gave him my jersey, and in fact he brought his own jersey for me, too.

“Osimhen is a nice boy, we’re from the same place. I love him, he’s down to earth, he’s hard working, he has a future and he has the mentality of a winner, that’s what I love about him. He has that lion’s heart.

“I love him, I just want him to keep working hard the way he’s doing, he’s going to break so many records in Europe and Nigeria.”Ighalo’s future at United remains uncertain: Standard Sport understands the club are working through a four-man shortlist before deciding on whether to try and sign the loanee permanently.

Ighalo’s parent club. Shanghai Shenhua will offer the striker a £400,000-a-week, two-year contract, which United will struggle to match – but the fact that Ighalo is a United fan could work in their favour.


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