Umar Sadiq showing that he can offer more to Super Eagles?
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Umar Sadiq showing that he can offer more to Super Eagles?

If there is anything to see from Umar Sadiq great form at Almeria, it is the fact that there is more to his game than just being a target man.

Standing at 6’4 tall, it is often believed that players with such a frame are a good fit for the target man striking position.

While this might be the case or had been the case for Sadiq Umar, the Nigerian is showing that he can do more than just being a target man.

Umar Sadiq has provided seven assists in 24 league games more than any player in La Liga Smartbank with more than 12 goals.

His link-up play, wing play, and positional awareness have greatly improved.

Since he returned from the African Cup of Nations in Cameroon, Sadiq has contributed a total of seven goals including a winning penalty in five games.

He has scored five goals, assisted one goal, and won two penalties (One scored and the other missed)

In each of the games he played after AFCON, he was more than a static striker but was on the left, right, and center trying to make things happen.

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At AFCON, his first game against Egypt wasn’t the best, he was okay against Guinea-Bissau and even got a goal.

Although he could have done better a fact Austin Okocha pointed out during his punditry role.

“I think tall strikers most of the time struggle with their feet and a striker with quicker football control would have tucked that one in,” Okocha talking about a chance Sadiq missed against Guinea-Bissau.

“His decision making there was poor, if you can’t round the goalkeeper then you should be able to pick your colleague that is coming from behind but he made the wrong decision there.”

I thought he was one of Nigeria’s best players on the pitch against Tunisia. He did more in the second half when he came in than Taiwo Awoniyi who started the game.

He had a few chances to bring Nigeria back in the game but he missed them.

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One chance often talked about was in added time, when he got behind the Tunisian defence and fired across goalkeeper Bechir Ben Said but his shot trickled wide of the far post.

Right now, it looks like Sadiq Umar has taken all the points made by fans, his critics, and worked on them.

Here are some of his performances for Almeria since he returned from AFCON 2021.

What you will see is a striker with good decision-making, great confidence in his ability, skills, and one who can create goals for his teammate.

Umar Sadiq who is currently one of Nigeria’s best players in Europe at the moment needs to be given his chance to impress.

Hopefully, he grabs the opportunity and deliver as the competition for a place in the Super Eagles is very tough which is a good problem.

Next month, Nigeria will play against Ghana for a place in the 2022 FIFA World Cup, Sadiq Umar will be looking forward to playing a part in the games.

Tope Adefala

Tope Adefala is an experienced sports writer, editor, and web designer. A former editor at Sportlineng.com. Talks sports with a great bias for Basketball, Tennis, Field Hockey and Football. Presently the media officer of Nigeria Hockey Federation. I have been in the business of Sports communication and marketing for more than 10 years. Not forgetting that I won West African University Games, Nigeria University Games gold medals. You can find me on Twitter @1topham.

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