“I can’t say anything bad”- Real Sociedad boss extols Sadiq Umar amid talks of a possible exit

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Real Sociedad coach Imanol Alguacil has praised Super Eagles striker Sadiq Umar for his commitment to the team since he returned from injury, reports.

Umar joined Real Sociedad two years ago for a club-record €20 million. The Super Eagles striker had earlier impressed at Almeria, where he produced 43 goals and 19 assists in 84 games.

It looked like the deal would be a great one for both sides after Umar scored on his debut for the club against Atletico Madrid. However, those hopes faded away two games later, when he sustained an anterior cruciate ligament injury.

That injury kept him out of action for the rest of the season, ensuring that he missed 51 games for club and country.

However, Umar returned to action in the just-concluded season, but his game time was limited. Coach Imanol gave him a few chances, and he did show glimpses, scoring two belters in the Laliga. In all, the 27-year-old striker registered three goals and one assist in 26 appearances for Real Sociedad.

Because of his limited game time, Umar’s future has been in the balance, with reports suggesting that he may be keen on an exit. Also, he seemed to have fallen out with Imanol before the end of the season because he only got 22 minutes of action in the last nine games of the season.

However, after the final game of the season, in an interview, Imanol insisted that he has a decent relationship with Umar and he has been impressed with his commitment.

“The only thing I can thank him (Sadiq) for is his commitment, for how he has behaved since he arrived, whether he has been more or less fortunate,” Imanol said per Futbol Fantasy.

“There has not been any bad gesture, he has always wanted to contribute and, when he has not done it, it has been a technical-tactical decision. He has respected it, he has continued training until the end, being one more. That’s why I say, I can’t ask for more from these types of players.

“He gives his all, this is football and it’s about performing, getting it right. But hey, the main thing and the basic thing, for me, is to give it your all, give it your all and be respectful. In Sadiq’s case, I don’t. I can’t say anything bad about him.”

“It is clear that players who have had this injury, well, suffer a lot when it comes to returning and getting back into the rhythm.”

Getafe has been touted as a possibility destination for Umar. He would have to make a big decision this summer if he wants to save his career.