Former Nigerian international striker Odion Ighalo is hopeful that his loan spell at English Premier League club Manchester United will be extended.
Ighalo joined United on loan from Chinese Super League side Shanghai Shenhua in January until the end of this month.
However, Ighalo may have to return to China as there are plans to start the league in the near future and the English Premier League appears to be no closer to a return as opinion in the UK remains divided on how to get teams back on the pitch.
The Chinese FA had instructed clubs that they may begin preparing for a new season, which they hope may start in late June or July. Moreover, as it currently stands, Shanghai Shenhua will only allow Ighalo to remain at United if it is on a permanent deal.
Ighalo told BBC Sport that he would like to finish the season if it is possible.
“I was in good form, good shape, scoring goals and now we’ve stopped now for over a month. I’ve given it my best and hopefully we’ll come back to play,” Ighalo said.
“The team had a good momentum before the pandemic started. At the moment I’m on loan, and this will cut short my time at the club.”
Ighalo said the disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic have hit the entire football fraternity hard.
“The club, myself, every footballer is going through a lot because we can’t do what we love and what we know how to do best, so we’re just thinking about that for now and to finish the season before we start thinking about the contract,” he added.
In April, Ighalo told Elegbete TV there no offer on the table yet from United regarding the extension of his stay beyond his current loan spell.
The Nigerian has so far netted four goals in eight games for United who are keen to extend his stay to cover the end of the season.