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Spurs should target Adama Traore over Dan James

Tottenham Hotspur could still move for Adama Traore as their search for attacking reinforcements rumbles on ahead of Thursday’s transfer deadline…

What’s the word?

The north London side have been linked to numerous attacking midfielders and wingers in recent weeks but according to Sky Sports reporter Paul Gilmour, mooted moves for names such as Allan Saint-Maximin at Newcastle United and Dan James at Leeds United seem unlikely.

Although, the Wolverhampton Wanderers star is a viable candidate with just over 48 hours left to complete business.

He told the ‘Last Word on Spurs’ YouTube channel:

“Adama Traore is one that won’t go away either, with his contract running down. There’s always a chance.

“He’s [got] good Premier League experience, so he will be quite appealing as a good squad player for any top six club.”

Better than Dan James

As outlined at Football FanCast in recent days, James would be something of a backwards move for the Lilywhites as he has struggled to impress ever since his step up to the Premier League.

The Wales international, who has been dubbed a “headless chicken” by LeedsLive contributor Conor McGilligan, is currently on a run of 17 matches without a goal, whilst his overall record for Leeds is pretty underwhelming, managing a goal or assist every 313 minutes.

Whilst Traore’s end product isn’t much better, if not slightly worse, the tricky Wolves man is hugely versatile and a major threat on any given afternoon.

If Conte wants a winger, who would you rather Spurs sign?

Adama Traore

Adama Traore

Dan James

Dan James

His brute physicality and rapid pace is trouble for many a Premier League defender and that’s something we have witnessed plenty of times, leading to Southampton striker Che Adams once lauding him as a “monster,” whilst BT Sport pundit Rio Ferdinand previously likened him to a powerlifter.

“He’s a machine. I was watching him pre-game and he could be a powerlifter or a cruiser-weight boxer – he’s huge. He’s powerful and quick and this season he has been scaring defenders. You see teams now trying to double up against him because of the threat he possesses.”

When compared to his positional peers across Europe, Traore ranks within the top 1% for dribbles completed (5.22) and the top 5% for progressive carries (10.16) per 90, as per FBref.

James is some way off this feat, ranking in the top 96% for dribbles completed (0.67) and the top 80% for progressive carries (4.70) per 90, so the Leeds man doesn’t just lack end product, he lacks plenty of bite and if anything, is a much more lightweight option.

Another factor behind Traore being the better option is the fact that he could cost just £10m, given his £43k-per-week contract expires next summer. James, however, cost the Whites a whopping £30m and they’d surely want to recoup as much of that as possible.

So if Conte does want another winger – with Bryan Gil likely to leave on loan and Lucas Moura currently injured – then sporting director Fabio Paratici ought to favour Traore, who has also been dubbed an “animal” by Barcelona manager Xavi, over the underperforming James.

AND in other news, Fabrizio Romano relays “agreement” over Spurs exit, it’s great news for Conte…