Will he stay or will he go?
It's been a question asked of Vancouver Whitecaps head coach Marc Dos Santos about star fullback Ali Adnan essentially every day for the last two months. Every day, the answer hasn't been definitive either way. Even after the initial deadline to get a deal done (or not) has passed — July 1 is when the loan agreement from Serie A's Unidese expired — the answer hasn't changed. Adnan's future still is up in the air.
"Before the game against LAFC (Saturday), for sure you guys are going to have a definite answer," Dos Santos said after training on Tuesday.
Dos Santos even joked about getting tired of answering the same question every day.
"It's been annoying now for me for one month, everybody's asking me," Dos Santos said. "I said when it's confirmed, we'll talk."
Soon enough, even if the whole saga is moving slowly behind the scenes. Dos Santos hinted that the wait was on the Italian club that holds his contract to finalize any permanent move.
"In soccer, it's very slow," Dos Santos said. "It's a process, a lot of people are involved. On Ali's side and our side, it's done. It's a little bit out of our control. It's frustrating because many situations are slow."
Adnanjoined the club at the beginning of March, debuted March 30 and has started every match since. The Whitecaps would love to keep the player, as it's someone who has proved a vital cog in Dos Santos' rebuild, both in technical quality and intangibles.
"He's a player that, since he arrived from day one, his competitiveness in his head and how much he wants to win, he shows it," Dos Santos said. "Of course he has mistakes like every player, but that's what we need. He has attributes that are very different from other left backs in MLS."
For now, it's unclear if Adnan will be on Dos Santos' team sheet on Saturday against the LAFC (10:30 pm ET | TSN2, MLS LIVE on ESPN+ in the US), or back with Udinese.