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Villarreal ready to make surprise transfer decision over €12m signing as replacement lined up

Is Boulaye Dia out of chances with Unai Emery?

Villarreal CF v Sevilla FC - La Liga Santander Photo by Manuel Queimadelos/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Fabrizio Romano has dropped more information on the striker situation at Villarreal as he now reports that Boulaye Dia may be on his way to Salernitana on a loan to buy and Umar Sadiq is seen as his replacement.

I’ve spoken before about my thoughts on a Sadiq fit, when he was the rumored replacement in case Danjuma left the club, you can read those thoughts here. I’m not particularly high on the player, and I really don’t see much sense in moving Dia to get him.

The two pieces of this news that are most relevant are the Dia destination and the fact that if Sadiq is who Emery has his heart set on, we kind of need to get moving before La Real or Valencia scoop him up. To the former, I personally consider US Salernitana a risky place to send Dia. They were 17th in Serie A last season, beating the drop by a single point. If we loan Boulaye there and then they get relegated next season, there seems to me to be very little chance that buy option gets picked up. Even if they do survive, unless that survival triggers a buy obligation, we may still see Dia come back as the rumored 11m buy option would be significantly higher than Saliernitana’s record fee. For some perspective, there are only two buys in club history more expensive than the 5m spent on Gennaro Gattuso in 1998.

At any rate, I really am not fed up with Dia. He can certainly be improved upon, but he always looked his best last season when he was playing with Gerard, who he was clearly bought to pair with, and the injuries to 7 made that duo hard to put on the pitch together last season. I would support sticking with him one more year to see if that partnership could flourish before moving Dia out the door unless I had a sure fire improvement lined up, and that’s just not what Sadiq is.