The confinement of Odion Ighalo from Manchester United’s training ground is just precautionary; and has always been the plan, says Sky Sports News reporter James Cooper.
A report in the Daily Mirror on Wednesday, February 12; claimed Ighalo, who joined United in a Deadline Day move from Chinese club Shanghai Shenhua; was banned from the club’s AON Training Complex in Carrington amid fears over spreading the coronavirus.
The 30-year-old has not tested positive for the virus and, as part of the government’s precautionary procedures; has been put on a two-week incubation period ending this weekend.
This coincided with United’s return to the UK from their warm-weather training camp in Marbella; which Ighalo had missed over similar concerns.
The Nigerian striker has been training in Manchester’s Taekwondo Centre on the Etihad Campus; and will be part of United’s travelling party when they face Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Monday.
“I think there’s been a lot of hysteria quite naturally surrounding the coronavirus; but what Manchester United have done is precautionary, and certainly from their point of view it far exceeds the government guidelines on treating somebody or working with somebody that’s come from China,” Cooper told Sky Sports News.
“When Ighalo was signed on Deadline Day he arrived from China; but not from the Wuhan province; a lot of people coming from China were done by the same stipulation; that they might come from the Wuhan province; of course he’s on a 14-day incubation period.
“Manchester United quite naturally felt it was right and wise for him to train away from Carrington. There are a lot of reasons for that, clearly there’s a risk of infection, apparently very minor, and it’s an elite training base.
“Manchester United certainly think that they have far exceeded the government on this; but they are working sensibly and practicably in this situation; where of course you’re looking at a league training centre and you don’t want any risk of infection. Odion Ighalo has been doing his fitness work in Manchester on his own and that has been the plan all along.”