Talks between Manchester United and striker Odion Ighalo about an extension to his loan deal have reached an “impasse”, according to a report.
Ighalo signed for United from Shanghai Greenland Shenhua on deadline day in January, in a short-term deal that it was initially hoped would tie the Red Devils over until the end of the season, following Marcus Rashford’s back injury.
The Nigeria international had played above expectations before the season was halted, scoring four goals in three starts, and United boss Solskjaer admitted that he was considering offering the striker a permanent deal.
Ighalo’s loan deal expires on May 31 and, unlike players contracted on a longer-term basis to Premier League clubs, the 30-year-old will not have his terms automatically extended to allow him to finish the season at Old Trafford.
As such, United have been in talks to extend the loan deal for that purpose but the Evening Standard claims that progress on the matter has ground to a stop.
Shanghai Shenhua are reportedly “demanding” that Ighalo returns for the start of the new Chinese Super League season, pencilled in for July.
Ighalo’s deal did not include an option to buy, it is claimed, as United saw it as a stopgap for covering for Rashford‘s injury.
The newspaper says that, should United pursue a permanent deal for Ighalo, the striker would have to take a significant pay decrease from his current wages, said to be in the region of £300,000 per week.
Previous reports claimed that Newcastle will look into signing the player if he leaves Old Trafford.
In other news, United are reportedly close to sealing a deal to sign Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez.