Adama Traore was courted by NFL teams to play American football during his time at Barcelona, according to Wolves teammate Romain Saiss.
The explosive winger spent 11 years with the Blaugrana as a youngster but moved to England in search of first-team football in 2015, joining Aston Villa.
How close was Traore to becoming an NFL player? Five things to know…
- Traore spent 11 years at Barca as a youngster but made just four first-team appearances.
- Since leaving in 2015, he’s had failed spells at Aston Villa and Middlesbrough.
- After initially struggling at Wolves, he’s hit form this season, managing four goals and four assists in the Premier League.
- Teammate Saiss has revealed Traore was approached by NFL clubs during his time at Barca.
- Saiss also claimed he’s never seen Traore lift weights in the gym, despite his physique.
His time with the Midlands club, and Middlesbrough after that, was something of a failure, while he initially struggled to make his mark at Wolves.
But this season Traore has exploded into life, notching four goals and four assists in the Premier League so far and reportedly attracting the attention of Liverpool and Manchester City.
However, according to Saiss, it could all have been very different with the midfielder revealing his teammate was approached by a number of NFL sides during his time at Barcelona and that he’s never seen Traore lifting weights, despite his incredible physique.
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“Maybe he has a hidden gym room in his house, but at training, in any case, he never pumps iron, whether it is bench-press or otherwise. He is huge and very quick.
“I remember saying to him: ‘You run like an American footballer’. He responded to me that at the time that he played in Barcelona, NFL teams tried to get him to playing American football instead, that’s how explosive he was.
“There are people who say that it is not possible, that he cannot be playing football.”