Footballlive.ng can report that, with Ighalo earning a hefty pay with the club during their days in China’s top-flight money-spinning division, the team may not be able to afford his wages while competing in the lower cadre.
Sadly, Ighalo, whose contract with Yatai runs out in December 2020, was not available to save them from taking the drop on Sunday, as he was last week ruled out of action for the season, with a hamstring injury suffered in the previous fixture.
Consequently, Ighalo, who had been on a sensational run of goals scoring form before bowing to injury, was missing from Sunday’s fixture against Dalian Yifang.
In Ighalo’s absence, Yatai failed to win their final match of the season, as their lack of victory hit a dismal run in their last seven games of the campaign – with three draws and four losses.
Though fellow-Nigerian star, John Mikel Obi’s Tianjin Teda and Chongqing Lifan also lost their last games of the term, they both finished on 32 points like Changchun Yatai, but they edged Ighalo’s side on goals difference.
Ironically, it was the season in which Ighalo set a new personal goals record for himself in a single campaign, but he could not save Changchun Yatai, who fell 2-0 at their closest rivals, Dalian Yifang and finished on 32 points from 30 matches.
Mikel’s Teda pulled off a Great Escape on the final day of action even though they lost 5-1 at front runners Guangzhou Evergrande, finishing on 32 points, ahead of the relegated team of Ighalo, who netted 21 goals this season, after scoring 15 in the previous campaign.