The Hornets are desperate to push through his £21million move to the Chinese Super League today. Ighalo, who has rejected two previous chances to head to Asia, is in talks over a big-money switch to Changchun Yatai.
But West Brom have now thrown a spanner in the works by launching a loan bid for the Nigerian frontman. And Ighalo has told Watford he wants to stay in the Premier League and head to the Hawthorns to complicate matters even further.
Watford are only interested in a permanent deal and have made their stance clear by telling Ighalo, who has scored a meagre three league goals in the last year, that he is no longer part of their plans.
West Brom are interested in taking Ighalo on loan
Walter Mazzarri is planning a clear-out at Watford
Walter Mazzarri is revamping his squad and Ighalo’s expected exit will spark an exodus with Algerian midfielder Adlene Guedioura heading to Hull for £3m and back-up striker Jerome Sinciar joining Birmingham on loan.
Ecuador defender Juan Carlos Paredes is also on his way out after opening talks with Greek side Olympiakos. It means M’Baye Niang, among the new striker signing, is set to be plunged straight in for his debut at Arsenal tonight in a bid to end Watford’s slump.
Ater a six-match winless streak in the Premier League and Sunday’s woeful FA Cup fourth-round exit at League One side Millwall, the pressure is mounting on manager Mazzarri.
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Mazzarri’s hand will be forced despite admitting the on-loan AC Milan frontman is not up to full speed just yet. He said: “Niang hasn’t been training a lot with the team but is a player that we can utilise.
“We believe in this young player and he has great qualities. If he can understand the way we play then he can be a very important player that’s perfect for the Premier League.”