An update has emerged regarding Manchester City’s pursuit of Almeria striker Umar Sadiq.
According to Spanish outlet AS, the Premier League champions are readying an opening bid for the Nigerian this month. City are ready to swoop for the former Rangers forward and are planning to send him on loan to Ligue 1 side Troyes if they are able to land him before considering him for the first team in 2022.
The report claims that Almeria want €30m (£25.8m) for Sadiq, who has a €60m (£51.6m) release clause in his contract. It remains to be seen how much the Cityzens are willing to spend on the 24-year-old.
This is an interesting move by Manchester City and could be viewed in one of two ways. One is the more cynical view that City are purely buying him for trading and profit purposes. For example, the plan could be to loan him to Troyes, hope that he can score 15-20 goals in Ligue 1 and then cash in on him and make a profit because another club in Europe may see his performances and offer Man City more than what they paid for him from Almeria.
City’s owners bought Troyes last year and the club sealed promotion to the top tier by winning Ligue 2 in the 2020/21 campaign. This means that they will be playing top-flight football next season and City could benefit from sending talent to France for them to play regular games at a respectable standard. This means that Troyes would be the ideal club for that situation to play out next term.
The other, more optimistic, view is that City are signing him with the future in mind, and that is the one we think this could be. Sadiq enjoyed a terrific season with Almeria as he was directly involved in 27 league goals in 38 games for the club, whilst also scoring twice in three cup matches.
He provided 20 goals and seven assists for Almeria in the league, which suggests that he is ready to make the step up to Ligue 1 and, potentially, the Premier League. Therefore, another year of development with Troyes in the French top flight could – as the report suggests – prepare him for City’s first team squad.
Txiki Begiristain could be striking gold with this move as the 6ft 2 beast could end up being a player worth chucking into Pep Guardiola’s first team squad. Guardiola could enjoy taking him in and coaching him into becoming a top striker in the Premier League, as he has already shown that he has the raw materials to be a good centre-forward, consistently finding the back of the net in Spain.
The City manager could help him improve and turn him into a player who is able to make an impact in the Premier League, which is why Txiki could strike gold with this potential deal.