The limit on the number of loan players allowed in a match-day squad was one of the main reasons Watford decided to sign Odion Ighalo permanently, the Watford Observer understands.

FA regulations state clubs are only allowed to name five loan players in their 18-man match-day squad.

The arrival of Sebastien Bassong, on loan from Norwich City, has seen the Hornets reach the maximum number permitted in their last two matches.

And with Keith Andrews, on loan from Bolton Wanderers, back fit, the club decided to make Ighalo’s temporary switch from Udinese permanently yesterday.

We have been told Watford did consider signing Ighalo permanently in the summer but wanted to ensure the Nigerian would settle off the pitch, as well as on it.

The 25-year-old has helped fill the void left by Troy Deeney, who spent a month out with a hamstring injury, and has scored three goals in his last three games. He had previously failed to score in his first seven outings for the club, four of which were from the bench.

We understand the Golden Boys do not have imminent plans to make another other loan signing but Ighalo’s transfer would provide further flexibility in team selection should that change.