The Nigerian has impressed since joining on loan from Shanghai Shenhua and the former Red Devils striker thinks it may want to be a good idea to retain him.
Dimitar Berbatov does not consider that Manchester United will want to prolong Odion Ighalo’s contract should they be active in the transfer market and convey in the likes of Harry Kane and Jadon Sancho.
As stated by Goal , the Red Devils presently lead the chase for the Dortmund winger ahead of Chelsea, whilst Tottenham striker Kane is ready to think about a switch to Old Trafford as he favours such a move over a possible rebuild at Spurs.
Berbatov has been impressed by what he is seen from January loan signing Ighalo – who has 4 goals in eight games since becoming a member of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side – however suspects that club’s summer transfer approach will ultimately decide his long-term future.
“If Ighalo continues how he has done so far, scoring goals and assisting the team, then I assume he must be given another contract, however saying that you need to weigh up the situation,” Betfair Ambassador Berbatov told Goal.
“Sancho and Kane are two names being talked up with moves to the club at the moment, so you need to calculate what path the club wants to go.
“Do they want to purchase new strikers? If they do it would seem abnormal to keep Ighalo. With the current situation, I cannot see them spending too much and I suppose it would make sense for Ighalo to stay.”
The coronavirus outbreak has halted football in England and throughout the globe, with Ighalo having made an incredible start to his United profession prior to the Premier League being postponed.
The Nigerian’s loan contract ends on May 31 however it is likely special dispensation will be given to clubs in these extraordinary occasions so the forward must be allowed to remain till the end of the current campaign, must it be played out.
And whilst Berbatov thinks that it should be a desirable idea to keep Ighalo, he does not think the Shanghai Shenhua forward would be content with being a back-up alternative beyond the 2019-20 season.
He added: “It would not be a terrible issue to keep him around, I think Solskjaer wants to give him his trustworthy thoughts. At the moment I think he has more of a back-up striker position to [Anthony] Martial or [Marcus] Rashford, I think he knows that and you can see he appreciates it due to the fact when he gets a chance he does his job, which is great.
“If he is going to stay, they will all start on an equal footing and if you train well and you score goals, you will play. I do not think he will just want to be a back-up striker, no one wishes that, you prefer to play from the start.”
United are presently fifth in the Premier League table and all however through to the quarter-finals of the Europa League having thumped LASK 5-0 in the first leg of their last-16 tie.
It remains uncertain what will appear with the remainder of the 2019-20 campaign, however, with the Premier League having announced on Friday that there will be no resumption of the season at the start of May due to the coronavirus pandemic.