'It's one of those goals you try in training' – Ince doubts Ighalo would have tried wonderstrike in front of packed stands

March 15, 2020 0 By JohnValbyNation

The new Red Devil continues to win fans’ hearts with his exploits, but Ince believes the lack of support in the stadium helped him

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Paul Ince compared Odion Ighalo’s Europa League wondergoal to a training ground exercise, claiming he would not have scored such an effort if the stadium was not closed off to supporters. 

LASK’s Linzer Stadion was empty on Thursday due to restrictions designed to halt the spread of coronavirus as the Austrian club and Manchester United played the first leg of their last-16 meeting. 

United, however, showed little sign of being affected by the silence as they romped to a 5-0 victory. 

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Ighalo opened the scoring just before the half hour with a fantastic strike from the edge of the area, while Daniel James, Juan Mata, Mason Greenwood and Andreas Pereira also found the net on a vintage European evening for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s evening. 

The Nigeria international took all the plaudits, with many United fans claiming his recent form merited the Ballon d’Or for 2020. 

But Ince doubted whether he would have had the confidence to pull off the goal were it not for the ban. 

“It reminds me of one of those goals you try in training. If it’s a full house, I don’t know,” the former United star explained to BT Sport. 

“Maybe I’m doing a disservice to him, but I don’t know…”

Owen Hargreaves, another ex-Red, disagreed with his co-pundit, arguing that Ighalo deserved full credit for his creativity. 

“Come on, Incey, that’s a beautiful goal! That’s one of the best goals he’s ever scored,” the former midfielder argued. 

Ighalo joined United in the January transfer window from Shanghai Shenhua, raising a few eyebrows with his signing having made a poor first of his last taste of Premier League football with Watford. 

The 30-year-old, however, has worked quickly to win Red hearts, although he is still waiting to make his full league debut. 

An FA Cup double over Derby County helped United progress to the quarter-finals last week and he now boasts four goals in just three starts, ramping up the pressure on Solskjaer to give him more game time.