Leeds United are interested in a deal to bring Adama Traore to Elland Road in the summer transfer window.
That’s according to a report by 90min, who claim that, with Victor Orta having already made an enquiry regarding a deal for the Wolverhampton Wanderers winger earlier this year, the Spanish sporting director is once again exploring a move for the 26-year-old this summer.
The report goes on to state that both Tottenham Hotspur and Newcastle United are also keeping a close eye on the situation of the Spain international ahead of a potential move of their own in the coming months, while Wolves are believed to be more than happy to sanction the forward’s sale this summer – with an offer of €20m (£17m) reported to be enough to get a deal done.
While it is true that Traore can often leave a lot to be desired when it comes to his end product, the winger’s progression and retention of the ball would very much place him in the category of being an “unreal” – in the words of Nathan Judah – signing for Orta to get over the line this summer.
Despite FBref data ranking the £22.5m-rated talent in the bottom 8% of wingers and attacking midfielders in Europe’s big five leagues for non-penalty goals per 90, as well as the bottom 30% for npxG and the bottom 34% for shots over the past 12 months, it is Traore’s ability when carrying the ball that makes him such a unique option.
Indeed, FBref data also ranks the £46k-per-week forward in the top 1% for dribbles completed per 90, in addition to the top 3% for progressive carries, the top 15% for touches in the opposition penalty area, the top 25% for shot-creating actions and the top 38% for progressive passes received over the last 365 days.
As such, with the strengths and weaknesses of the player who Judah dubbed “scary” and Cetin Cem Yilmaz labelled a “beast” being evident, should the 26-year-old be deployed in a system that gets the most out of his particular skill set, the Spaniard would undoubtedly be a huge weapon going forwards.
And, if he is available for a figure of just £17m this summer, coupled with Jesse Marsch believing that he can work the forward into his starting XI at Elland Road, a deal for Traore very much looks as if it has the potential to be one of the best signings of the summer transfer window.