Odion Ighalo, Nigerian striker reveals he rejected offers to join Barcelona

Odion Ighalo, Nigerian striker reveals he rejected offers to join Barcelona

- Odion Ighalo, Super Eagles star claims he rejected a move to join Barcelona in January

- The 29-year-old was targeted as a back up for Luis Suarez by the Catalan side this winter

- Meanwhile, the former Watford man remained in the Chinese league but this time with Shanghai Shenhua

Super Eagles striker Odion Ighalo has revealed that he rejected offers to join Spanish League giants Barcelona on a short term loan deal this January.

The former Watford forward claims he 'deserved better' than the deal the Spanish league giants proposed to him.

Ighalo, who recently joined Chinese Super League side Shanghai Shenhua scored 21 goals for his former side Changchun Yatai in 2018 - but the club still relegated at the end of that season.

The Catalans made the 29-year-old one of their target during the winter transfer window as a back up for ageing Luis Suarez.

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And this will not be the first time they would be signing a player from China - as they brought Brazil midfielder Paulinho from the Asian League last campaign.

BBC however reportds that the Nigeria international wasn't satisfied with the deal - saying the terms of the proposal wasn't enough to make him return to La Liga.

"My agent spoke to me about a loan interest from Barcelona. The club wanted a striker with La Liga experience and someone who understands Spanish football," Ighalo, who instead opted to stay in the CSL with Shanghai Shenhua, told BBC Sport.

"It was meant to be a six-month loan and strictly as a back-up striker. It was nice to hear that Barcelona were interested and any footballer would be more than happy to take it.

"But, with due respect, I had just finished as the second top scorer in China with 21 goals, I deserve better and didn't want to be a short-term player somewhere.

"We rejected it, it was an easy decision to make and I chose to stay in China by joining Shanghai Shenhua on a longer contract.

"You need to weigh things up properly in life and ask yourself if it is your call to make, or one to satisfy others.

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"I respect my decision. I needed to focus on what is good for my career long term and when you decide to do something – you stay true to yourself. It wasn't for me and I am happy where I am.

"I have no regrets or whatsoever because I am happy at Shanghai Shenhua. To reunite and play under my former Watford coach [Quique Sanchez Flores] is exciting and I love it."

Since the Ighalo deal failed to pull through, Barcelona ended up signing Kevin-Prince Boateng as back up for their top striker Suarez until the end of the season.

Legit.ng earlier reported that Odion Ighalo was wanted by Barcelona as they shop for Munir El Haddadi and Denis Suarez's replacement this month.

The Changchun Yatai forward scored 21 goals and assisted one other in 28 Chinese Super League matches last season.

Despite his double figure goals in the CSL last campaign, they were unable to save his team from relegating after finishing 15th on the log.

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Source: Legit Newspaper

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