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Leeds must land Harrison upgrade in Adama Traore

Leeds United continue to be linked with a host of players, with Victor Orta not allowing his club to go down without a fight.

They currently sit just two points outside the Premier League relegation zone and have won just once in their last eight games in all competitions. It is hardly inspiring form and puts them once again in a precarious situation as the second half of the campaign looms.

In an effort to ensure that this season does not finish as nervously as the last one did, additions have already been made to strengthen up front and at centre-back.

Orta could now look to add someone to create chances for Georginio Rutter from out wide, in the process upgrading from Jack Harrison, who has disappointed this season.

That man could be Adama Traore, who was suggested by TEAMtalk earlier this month as one of the players on Orta’s radar.

The 27-year-old has struggled to hold down a place at Wolverhampton Wanderers, with various managers struggling to squeeze consistency out of the speedster, who has started just six league games in 2022/23.

Across 175 appearances for the Old Gold, the Spain international has recorded just 13 goals and 18 assists. His goalscoring exploits don’t define him, though, and he still has plenty to offer to a team even without a huge goal output.

When he does strike a ball, it can at times be “almost unstoppable“, as Nuno Espirito Santo proclaimed after Traore’s winner against Leeds in February 2021.

With the ball at his feet, there is arguably nobody better in Europe. He pairs blistering speed with close control, and his hulking strength makes him a physical marvel. As such, he ranks in the top 1% for dribbles completed when compared to others in his position across the continent.

Who would you prefer to have on the wing?

Adama Traore

Adama Traore

Jack Harrison

Jack Harrison

This alone is enough to suggest why he would be a fine asset to Leeds, but he also averages 15 carries per 90 at an average distance of 14.8m. Again, he is peerless when it comes to progressing his team up the pitch he is unmatched.

Pairing these returns with 0.7 key passes per 90 from this season, one in which he has often been overlooked in the starting line-up, also marks him out as a creative threat.

Only last year he was labelled “one of the most exciting players in European football” by The Athletic journalist Tim Spiers, and that remains the case despite dwindling playtime.

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His physicality alone would make him an upgrade on Harrison, who enjoys patches of good form throughout the season but suffers in between. With five goal contributions to the Leeds winger’s name so far, only one of those has come in the last 13 league games.

He is far more technical than Traore, but those qualities can wane when he is suffering from a lack of confidence. 

Regardless of belief or performance on the day, the tangible qualities that former Barcelona winger Traore possesses can never be denied. Even on his worst day, he is still capable of beating numerous opponents, and his mere name can strike fear into defenders.

He could offer a vastly different profile to a Leeds team which has stagnated and could also give Harrison the kickstart to recapture his form or else lose his place in the side. Orta must duly get Traore in the door at Elland Road before the end of the month.