Recently, Middlesbrough winger Adama Traore has been linked with a move to Newcastle. But who is he?

Background information

Adama is a product of Barcelona’s famous La Masia academy. The youth setup has produced superstars like Xavi, Iniesta and of course Lionel Messi. The Spaniard broke into the Barcelona B team in 2013 and stayed there until 2015, making 63 appearances and scoring 8 goals. In the 2015/16 season, he joined Aston Villa for around £7 million and played 11 times without scoring once. The following season, he signed for fellow Spaniard Aitor Karanka and Middlesbrough for an undisclosed fee.

Style of play

Traore is a lightning fast winger with pace to burn. He’s incredibly strong and can brush defenders off with the drop of a shoulder. The other strong point of his game is his dribbling, he can dribble from one end of the pitch in mere seconds without losing the ball. I think he could easily get into a top 6 side if he found some end product. Tim Sherwood compared him to Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo and I can somewhat see where he’s coming from. Like Messi, he’s a very good dribbler and like Ronaldo he’s very good physically but you can’t compare the two can you?

Pros

The biggest pro of his game is his incredible pace. He can toy with defences for a full 90 minutes. You can see from this compilation how much he cause trouble for the opposition. He does have age on his side as he’s only 21 and already putting in some good performances.

Cons

This all sounds very good. However, there is one massive problem and that’s his end product. In his last 38 Premier League games for Villa and Boro, he hasn’t scored a single goal. He’s a very frustrating player because he has everything except the goals/assists. Benitez must see something in him but it might be too big a challenge even for him.

Feature image credit: Steenbergs

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