Humble beginning: I couldn’t afford to customise United jersey – Ighalo
Red Devils’ new recruit Odion Ighalo says he could not afford to have a Manchester United player’s name on the back of his shirt when he was growing up in Nigeria.
The self-professed United fan joined the club on loan for the rest of the season from Shanghai Shenhua in January and has already scored four goals in three starts.
Following the announcement of the deal, Ighalo’s agent, Atta Aneke, posted an old photograph of his client wearing the 2005-06 blue United away shirt that Ruud van Nistelrooy, Wayne Rooney, and Cristiano Ronaldo donned in the League Cup-winning season.
The shirt was only used for a year in that form since United switched their shirt sponsorship from Vodafone to AIG in 2006. United retained the blue kit in 2006-07 with the AIG logo.
Andy Cole and Dwight Yorke were Ighalo’s idols when he was growing up but the pair left United for Blackburn Rovers in 2001 and 2002. “I had a United jersey but no player name on the back,” he told the United magazine.
“It was one of the old blue ones but definitely no name on the back. You have to pay to put names on the back and there was no money to pay for that! I just got the United top.
“It was a blue one but a long time ago. I can’t remember (which season) as I was very, very young.” Punch