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Sadiq blows chances to earn Real Sociedad cup semi lead at Mallorca

Firing blanks: <a class="link " href="https://sports.yahoo.com/soccer/teams/real-sociedad/" data-i13n="sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link" data-ylk="slk:Real Sociedad;sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link;itc:0">Real Sociedad</a> forward <a class="link " href="https://sports.yahoo.com/soccer/players/444195/" data-i13n="sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link" data-ylk="slk:Umar Sadiq;sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link;itc:0">Umar Sadiq</a> (R) battling with <a class="link " href="https://sports.yahoo.com/soccer/teams/mallorca/" data-i13n="sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link" data-ylk="slk:Mallorca;sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link;itc:0">Mallorca</a> defender Jose Manuel Copete (JAIME REINA)

Real Sociedad striker Umar Sadiq spurned a string of opportunities to earn his team a first leg-advantage in a 0-0 Copa del Rey semi-final draw at Real Mallorca.

Imanol Alguacil's side, who won the 2019-20 Copa del Rey, with the final played in 2021 because of the Covid-19 pandemic, will feel they should have taken a win back to the Basque Country.

Sadiq, said La Real coach Alguacil, "knows it's a semi-final. He knows that this goal would have given us an advantage for the second leg, but here, when we slip up, we slip up together, when we win, we win together."

The visitors had the better chances at Mallorca's Son Moix stadium, many wasted by Nigerian forward Sadiq, although the hosts created a couple of excellent openings themselves.

"We deserved more," Real Sociedad midfielder Martin Zubimendi told Movistar.

Real Sociedad have struggled for consistency in La Liga, sitting sixth, but have impressed in cup competitions -- they will face Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League last 16.

La Real winger Ander Barrenetxea appealed for an early penalty after hitting the ground when knocked by Giovanni Gonzalez in the area but the referee waved away his appeal.

Takefusa Kubo, back with Real Sociedad after playing at the Asian Cup with Japan, was bright in the early stages but Mallorca did well to diminish his influence on the game.

Sadiq missed the first clear chance for his side before half-time, heading over from Barrenetxea's superb cross.

Abdon Prats missed Mallorca's most presentable opportunity early in the second half, prodding narrowly wide of the post from the edge of the area.

After going close twice in the second half when he might have scored, Sadiq missed the game's best chance from point blank range, sending Kubo's low cross over the crossbar.

"It's easy to criticise him," said Alguacil. "The important thing is to generate those chances, and the more we can score the better, but it's football and we have to support him."

Mallorca, who won the cup for the first and only time in 2003, held on to head to San Sebastian for the second leg on February 27 on level footing.

"With this opponent, who are better than us, who have a lot of resources, I'm happy with the result," said Mallorca coach Javier Aguirre.

"We knew they were going to put us under pressure, it was a game where we had to work a lot, run a lot, maybe not the most attractive, but the tie is open."

Atletico Madrid host Athletic Bilbao in the first leg of the other semi-final on Wednesday night.

Record 31-time winners Barcelona and reigning champions Real Madrid were knocked out by Athletic and Atletico respectively.

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