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Opinion: Man United must avoid signing versatile Premier League forward this summer

Manchester United are set to lose Odion Ighalo before the end of the season with the Nigerian forward expected back in China at parent club Shanghai Shenhua. 

The deadline day signing of Ighalo raised plenty of eyebrows, but was necessary as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer desperately scoured the market in the closing hours of the January window.

Fortunately for United, Ighalo’s fleeting spell at the club could not have have gone much better. He immediately became a fan-favourite and an output of four goals in eight appearances is more than adequate for a striker signed primarily as a back-up.

His impending exit means Solskjaer will again need to bolster his attacking options in the summer, regardless of the welcome return of talisman Marcus Rashford from injury.

One player that United tried to sign in January before settling on Ighalo was Bournemouth forward Josh King, and reports claim the club are keen to go in for him again in the upcoming transfer window.

As reported by Sky Sports, United had a £20m bid rejected for King in January and are one of a number of clubs chasing his signature again this summer.

King is a versatile forward who has plenty of experience in the Premier League having spent the last five seasons under Eddie Howe at the Vitality Stadium.

And he is seen as an attainable option to provide healthy competition in attack given his Norwegian connection with Solskjaer and the fact that the pair now share the same agent.

But we don’t see the value in completing the transfer of a 28-year-old who was not deemed good enough for the club seven years ago and has not reached the top level since.

King has managed just 24 goals in his last three Premier League campaigns and is not the prolific goalscoring forward that Solskjaer should be looking to add to his squad.

This summer represents the chance for Solskjaer to sign players that he can build his United squad around in the long-term, rather than finding short-term solutions.

The promotion of academy stars like Angel Gomes and Largie Ramazani to the first-team would be far more exciting for United fans.

While King could well prove us wrong and prove another welcome addition like Ighalo, a transfer would be characterised by convenience rather than long-term ambition.

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