Odion Ighalo
Watford striker Odion Ighalo has already scored 15 goals this season.Getty

Watford manager Quique Sanchez Flores has welcomed recent reports linking Odion Ighalo with a summer move to the likes of Arsenal or Manchester United as it shows that the Hornets are proving themselves to be a top team. The Spanish boss says speculations regarding the Nigerian hitman are to be expected as he is one of the division's best strikers.

Ighalo's long-term future at Vicarage Road has come under scrutiny in recent months, during a season in which he has scored 15 goals in 26 Premier League appearances. Reports in January linked him with a move to Manchester United, while the player himself admitted in an interview with The Sun that he would find a move to Old Trafford hard to turn down.

The Mirror reported on 25 February morning that Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has put the striker top of his shopping list for the summer, with Chelsea and Atletico Madrid also monitoring the situation. The report added that Watford would be looking for a fee of around £20m ($27.8m), and have already identified Granada's Isaac Success as a replacement.

Speaking in a press conference ahead of the home game with Bournemouth on Saturday, Flores said, as quoted by BBC: "Speculation about Ighalo is very normal. He is one of the best strikers in the division so it's very normal,"

"It's good. I love speculation for all the players in the squad. It means the performance of the team is good, every team wants players from Watford so we are doing something well and it's good news for our team."

The former Atletico Madrid boss, meanwhile, has urged his side to make a final push to reach the 40-point target as soon as possible to have a free-from-stress last part of the campaign, as they are currently on 36 following their recent win over Crystal Palace.

"We are really close. I would like to get to the objective as quick as possible," said Flores. "Leicester City are the example. They achieved 40 points and then they are freer on the pitch. They feel really, really positive and everything. This is ideal. We are really close."