​Manchester United striker Odion Ighalo says he will dedicate every goal he scores for the club to his late sister, who passed away in December.


Like Ighalo, 43-year-old Mary Atole was a Manchester United supporter and even prayed that her younger brother would end up playing at Old Trafford at some point in his career.


Her prayers were answered last month when Ighalo joined the club for the remainder of the season, but Manchester United's new striker has tragically revealed his older sister passed away just a month before the move happened.

Odion Ighalo

"I feel very emotional because it has not really struck me that my sister is gone forever and I am never going to see her again," Ighalo told The Sun.


"My twin sister, Akhere, will call me, crying, saying she misses her and, sometimes when I am alone, I cry too. It is a very painful loss but I am trying to be strong as a man.


"My sister was a strong United fan. All of us grew up watching Manchester United, we all supported them.


"She always prayed I would sign for United. Even when she came to watch me in the Premier League playing for Watford she hoped I would join United.

"The painful part for me is that I now have signed for United, but she is not here to see it. However, I know she is up there watching me.


"That is why I am going to play with her name on my boots, so she is always with me at Old Trafford or in any game for Manchester United.


“Every goal I score from now until I finish my career will be dedicated to God and to her.


"It means she can feel me playing at Old Trafford, feel that dream we all prayed for, even though she is not here to see it. But she will be on my feet, assisting me on the pitch."

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Ighalo could make his Manchester United debut on Monday when Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side travel to face Chelsea, looking to close the six-point gap between both sides.


Solskjaer has already confirmed that Ighalo will travel with his new teammates to Stamford Bridge.


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