The former Nigeria international was handed his first start in the second leg of United’s Europa League Round of 32 clash against Club Brugge.
And it was an opportunity he took perfectly well as he scored his first goal for the club, thereby becoming the first Nigerian to score for Manchester United.
Ighalooooooo….. 👏🏻 https://t.co/vo42jdbttC
— Oluwashina Okeleji (@oluwashina) February 27, 2020
The Nigerian had started his first three matches for United from the bench, but he was given a chance to lead the attack on Thursday night after Anthony Martial was ruled out of the encounter.
Speaking before the match, Solskjaer revealed Ighalo would be hoping to do well on his first start for the club.
Of course, Ighalo will be desperate to do well on his full debut for the team he has supported all his life.
“Well, he is focused and, of course, he has been looking forward to this,” Solskjaer told United’s website. “So let’s make sure that we play well, create chances for him and go through.”
And it happened exactly. The former Watford man could not have hoped for a better performance after he scored United’s second of the night.
1 – Odion Ighalo is the first African player to score for Manchester United in all competitions since Eric Bailly in August 2017 against Swansewa in the Premier League. Super. #UEFAEuropaLeague pic.twitter.com/CdX1mEuBsT
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) February 27, 2020
The 30-year-old got on the end of a Juan Mata’s cut back to tap into the net. Bruno Fernandes opened the scoring for United as he scored his second goal in as many games this week.
The Portugal international opened his United account in the win over Watford, scoring from the penalty spot. It was also the same case on Thursday night as he put Solskjaer’s men ahead from the penalty spot before Ighalo added a second.
Scott Mctominay, back in the side for the first time since December, added a third, four minutes before half-time.
Club Brugge held United in the first leg thanks to Emmanuel Dennis goal, but with the Nigeria international missing tonight through injury, Blauw-Zwart were toothless in attack.
Brazil international, Fred, scored twice late in the second half to complete the comprehensive win. United now go into the hat for the Round of 16 draws which will hold on Friday.