Football News

“Barcelona is my home, I will speak with my agent” — Adama Traore fuels speculation on La Liga return

By Ben Green

Published: 11:42, 22 June 2021

Wolves winger Adama Traore has refused to rule out the possibility of returning to Barcelona, saying “I have to discuss things with my agents”.

Traore, 25, broke through Barca’s world-renowned La Masia during his formative years, the academy responsible for some of the game’s greatest-ever talent, including the likes of Lionel Messi, Xavi, Andres Iniesta, Sergio Busquets, Pep Guardiola and more recently Ansu Fati.

Having excelled in Barcelona B, Traore earned his senior debut at 17, replacing Neymar in a 4-0 win over Granada in November 2013, before making his Champions League bow that same month, coming on for Cesc Fabregas in a group-stage game against Ajax.

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However, such was the talent ahead of Traore that he sought more regular playing time elsewhere, initially joining Aston Villa in the Premier League, before switching to Middlesbrough, where he flourished in the Championship after an underwhelming maiden campaign.

Wolves then came knocking and Traore has gone from strength to strength at Molineux. Although still inconsistent at times, a notable bone of contention among some fans, he remains a devastating threat on his day, culminating in the speedster completing the second-most take-ons in Europe’s top five leagues in 2020/21 (153), with only Messi (159) finishing ahead of him.

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Now in the Spain squad for Euro 2020, Traore has fanned the flames on a possible return to the Camp Nou, saying Catalonia is his “home” and that he will sit down with his agents and discuss his current situation.

He told RAC1: “Barcelona is my home. I grew up there, and was there for 10 years.

“I have to discuss things with my agents, and see what role Barca needs for a return.”

Traore: Pace, power and skill

Known for his hulking frame and vision-blurring speed, Traore’s physique certainly belies his intricacy in possession. With superb close control and excellent technique, Traore is a player who has the potential to be world class if utilised correctly.

He was the only player in the Premier League across 2020/21 to hit triple digits for completed take-ons, while he registered the most in Europe’s top five leagues the season prior (183), outscoring dribbling virtuoso Messi by one (182), while attempting considerably less in the process (246 to Messi’s 263).

However, there have often been question marks about Traore’s output in front of goal. On his day he has the ability to net a brace at the Etihad against Manchester City, but then go the first 30 games of 2020/21 without scoring a goal, finally breaking his drought in the 1-0 win over Fulham in April.

If Traore does indeed stay at Wolves, then fans will be hoping recently-appointed Bruno Lage, who succeeded Nuno Espirito Santo, can get Traore firing on all cylinders once again. If the five-capped Spain international can find his rhythm, Premier League full-backs will be having plenty of sleepless nights.