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African All Stars

Umar Sadiq: Nigeria and Real Sociedad star warned after anterior cruciate ligament injury

22:14 GMT+4 16/09/2022
Umar Sadiq Real Sociedad.
The Super Eagles star is expected to sit out a number of games after undergoing surgery in the week

Former Nigeria international Stephen Makinwa has advised Real Sociedad forward Umar Sadiq to focus on his recovery from an anterior cruciate ligament injury, but issued a warning about how the knock will affect the rest of his career.
Nevertheless, due to the advances in medical technology, he is hopeful Sadiq recovers sooner than expected.

The Super Eagles star – who suffered the setback during a La Liga match against Getafe – underwent surgery that the club said was successfully done.

"I will advise him to just focus on his recovery and be positive," Makinwa advised the Real Sociedad’s summer transfer deadline day signing, as quoted by Punch.

"Clearly, it’s a sad occurrence, how fast he comes back will be determined by how much he is going to put into his recovery procedure.

"So, if he wants to return stronger, he may have to focus more on his recovery."

Makinwa is hopeful that Sadiq’s recovery process might take a shorter time than initially expected, but often players who suffered such an injury never regain full fitness as the lasting effect of the blow remains.

"ACL these days, with the advanced technology, takes a shorter time, within four months the player should be okay," the retired forward added.

"Unlike my own time, it took more time to recover from such an injury. I don’t think he should be ruled out of the season, except there is more to the injury, but if it is just an ACL injury, he should be back by January 2023."

"I believe he will recover fully, even [though] sometimes with this type of injury, you hardly recover 100 per cent, but at least you will recover to a level that should be okay to play high-level football."

The 25-year-old – who has registered three La Liga goals so far this season - will miss Nigeria’s international friendlies against Algeria and Portugal.

He is expected to be unavailable for his Spanish club in a number of Uefa Europa League and league games. In his absence, Real Sociedad’s technical bench might be forced to fall back on Morocco and Ivory Coast prospect Mohamed-Ali Cho. The 18-year-old has played in five league games, starting in two of them.

Real Sociedad are expecting to feel the absence of Sadiq – who scored 18 goals and provided nine assists to help Almeria secure promotion to the Spanish elite division during the 2021-22 campaign – in a big way in their attacking department.