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“The Nigerian is technically better” – Former Barcelona midfielder compares Super Eagles star to La Liga’s newest Mali striker

One of Nigeria’s most prolific goalscorers in recent times continues to receive accolades from far and wide

Stade de Reims manager Óscar García has conceded that Super Eagles striker Umar Sadiq is a technically better forward than young Mali ace El Bilal Touré.

Sadiq left Almeria on transfer deadline day to complete a club-record €20 million move to fellow La Liga campaigners Real Sociedad.

Almeria moved the same day to shell out eight million euros for Mali international El Bilal Touré from Stade de Reims as Sadiq’s replacement.

Not much is known of the 20-year-old who only left Bamako-based Afrique Football Élite for Reims’ youth academy two years ago.

Several Almeria fans will expect him to step straight into the shoes left behind by Sadiq.

It will, however, not be easy to take over from a fan favourite who contributed 43 goals and 19 assists in 84 matches for La Union.

Stade de Reims coach Óscar García is convinced that El Bilal Touré has the quality to become a star at Almeria and in La Liga.

García admits that there are noticeable similarities and differences between Sadiq and Touré. But the former Barcelona midfielder is clear that the Super Eagles forward is farther gone in his technical development than the Malian youngster.

“Yes, although they are similar in the speed they both have because they are very fast in the field,” García told La Voz de Almeria.

“Both are very dangerous in space. Bilal Touré has a better aerial game than Umar Sadiq, but the Nigerian, technically today, is better.”

Sadiq will not get the chance to show his technical prowess on the pitch any time soon as the former Partizan Belgrade ace is out until 2023 with a serious injury.

The Nigeria international managed three goals (two for Almeria, one for Real Sociedad) in five La Liga games before injury sidelined him.



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