Odion Ighalo…Nigeria’s gift to the EPL
ODION IGHALO completed a permanent switch to Watford in October 2014, having initially signed on a one-year loan from Udinese just three months previous.
After a brief settling-in period, Ighalo burst onto the scene with a remarkable 13 goals in nine fixtures during the opening months of 2015, as he led the scoring charts across the whole of England for the calendar year.
The Nigerian scored 20 goals in total for the Hornets during 2014/15, finishing as the Hornets’ second top-scorer as the club achieved promotion back to the Premier League.
The Super Eagles’ star goal against Spurs took his goal tally this season to 14 in just 19 matches. The 26 year-old has not looked back since scoring against Everton on his Premier League debut on 8 August 2015.
The Lagos-born Watford striker has taken the premier League by storm. After five years on loan at different clubs in Spain and Italy, the 6ft 2in tall forward as found a stable home in England and is already a terror to the League’s best defenders.
And now, statistics and figures of the current English Premiership show that Odion Ighalo is better this year than Man City’s Aguero, Diego Costa of Chelsea and Leicester’s Vardy.
Odion Ighalo has scored more league goals in England’s top four tiers in 2015 than any other player. In other words, no one has scored more goals in England in 2015 than the Nigerian, all while playing for modest Watford. More than Sergio Aguero, Diego Costa and Jamie Vardy.
After netting an amazing 20 goals in 38 appearances for the Hornets in the Championship, Ighalo quickly dispensed any talk of being a ‘one season wonder’ or ‘lower league striker’ once Watford made the step up to the elite division.
It took Odion Ighalo only nine minutes on the pitch to score his first Premier League goal in a 2-2 draw with Everton, restoring Watford’s lead with seven minutes of play left after he was introduced into the encounter as a 74th minute substitute. It was the newly promoted side’s first top-flight game since 2006-07.
By the end of October, Ighalo had become the highest scorer in Watford’s Premier League history on seven goals, overtaking Heidar Helguson and Hameur Bouazza on six.
The Nigerian had netted again in Watford’s 2-0 trashing of West Ham at Vicarage Road, the first time Watford have scored more than once at home in a Premier League game since April 2007 (4-2 vs Portsmouth).
That game was also West Ham’s first defeat at Vicarage Road since April 1985, having been unbeaten in 11 games at the ground since then (W8 D3).