Ighalo on Man United move: I took pay cut to make transfer happen

Manchester United forward Odion Ighalo has said he took a pay-cut in order to facilitate his deadline-day transfer to Old Trafford from Shanghai Shenhua.

United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had been in the market for a forward following an injury to Marcus Rashford and Nigeria international Ighalo completed a shock loan move to United in the final hours of the transfer window.

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And Ighalo, who is a boyhood United fan, said he was so keen to make the deal happen with so little time left in the January window, he opted to take less money.

"My agent called me the day before and said Man United," Ighalo told United's website. "I would love to go.

"A few other clubs had shown interest, I said please, just pick United, if it's going to be possible. At 11 p.m. in Shanghai, my agent called me [to say] that United want to do the deal, so I woke up that night and started looking for a translator to go to the directors' room and hit his door and all that.

"My agent wants to speak to you, United are coming for me, you have to make this happen and all that you know. So they started talking and discussing. I didn't sleep throughout that night, because it was going to end at 7 a.m., Shanghai time, and the transfer [window] is going to close there.

"So, from 11 p.m., there was paperwork, negotiating and all that, for the loan deal and all that, so we are talking and other teams are calling them, wanting me, but I told my agent that this is what I want. I want to come here. He said you're going to get a pay-cut to go to United. I said I don't care. Make this deal happen. I want to go to United.

"I don't care how much is the pay-cut, I know that, make it happen. So the director and everybody didn't know what to say anymore, because I had already made up my mind, so my agent started putting it in order, and, at 5 a.m., we finished.

"My agent said he'd forwarded all the papers to United, they will confirm for me if everything is OK. I think, around 5 a.m.-6 a.m., he said: 'Everything is OK, it's done.'

"I was excited. I called my mum and she was happy, crying and all that. This is your dream and all that and I'm happy for you. It was dramatic, I didn't sleep through, I was very happy that finally we got the deal done."

Ighalo was United's third signing of the January transfer window following the arrivals of Bruno Fernandes and Nathan Bishop.