Former Nigeria international Odion Ighalo headed home twice on Monday to lead his club, Al-Shabab to a 2-1 away win at Damac FC to remain top of the Saudi Arabia Pro League with 44 points from 21 games, five more than their nearest rival, Al Hilal from the same number of matches.
The goals, Ighalo’s third in five games plus an assist is the Nigerian’s best start in a new league, eclipsing the two goals in five games he scored when he started his Premier League career in the 2015/16 season.
The Nigerian scored on his debut on Valentine’s day for his new Saudi Arabia club at the King Saud University Stadium where Al-Shabab hit their host, Al Nassr FC 4-0 with the 2019 African Cup of Nations top scorer netting the final goal in added time.
Ighalo also scored on his Premier League debut for Watford in their 2-2 draw at Everton with the Nigerian restoring the Hornets’ advantage 83 minutes before their host restored parity for the second time in the game through Arouna Koné off a Romelu Lukaku’s assist.
The brace is also Ighalo’s first in about 11 months after scoring twice for Manchester United in their 3-0 demolition of Derby County in a FA Cup fifth round game at Pride Park in March 2020.
The goals brings Ighalo’s game winning goals to 37 and he has scored 156 senior career goals since he scored his first, a left footed shot in his club, FK Lyn’s 3-2 loss to Peter Ijeh’s Viking Stavanger in Norway’s Eliteserien tie played at the Ullevål Stadion in September 2007.
By Bolaji Okunola