Striker Odion Ighalo will reportedly join Manchester United on loan.
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Manchester United striker hunt shows how far Liverpool have come

Manchester United reportedly spent transfer deadline-day looking for a striker and it really showed the level of Liverpool right now.

The BBC reported late on Friday that United were looking at a loan deal for Odion Ighalo. That’s after ending their interest in Bournemouth striker Josh King.

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Now, both players have had good times in the Premier League but neither are stand-out strikers. In short, neither would get in Liverpool’s first-team and few would swap Divock Orig as backup.

But United are in that position. They’re looking at real gambles, players who don’t strike fear in Premier League defences.

King, for instance, has only scored three goals this season. And, per Whoscored, only one of those came as a striker.

Ighalo did have a great Premier League season with Watford back in 2015/16, scoring 15 goals. But he followed that up with 1 goal in 18 – including zero in his last fifteen – before leaving for China.

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The need for a striker at United could actually bring up bad memories for Liverpool. They too, after all, went through a phase of desperately looking for options.

It led to Fabio Borini, Rickie Lambert and Mario Balotelli as Liverpool’s strike-force back in 2014/15. All were big gambles who had once shown promise. All flopped.

Because when it comes down to it, it’s difficult to find reliable strikers. The only way to guarantee things in any way is to be at that top level, where the best of the best actually want to play for you.

United, like Liverpool back in 2014, are a risk to the players. Can they compete there? Or will they be stuck at a club that can’t hit the top spots?

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Liverpool are in a much better place that carries the luxury of patience. They’ve reached a point where even the likes of Kylian Mbappe would reportedly consider them. There’s certainly no need for big gambles.

And that’s the difference right now. Liverpool were once in United’s position with things like this. Now, however, they are shopping in places that very, very few are capable of.

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