Having spent £52 million in the summer, you would expect Aston Villa to have more than eight points after 19 games. After the defeat at Norwich, you have to say that the Villains are effectively down. You have to question their team selection, and notably, the constant absence of Adama Traore.
Big things were expected of Mali international Traore after his £7 million move from Barcelona in the summer, and intrigue only increased after then-manager Tim Sherwood claimed he was “a mix of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.”
Remi Garde has suggested that the 19-year-old wasn’t ready for the demands of the English football. But in a side that is being considered as among the worst in Premier League history, is there anyone else good enough to keep them in the division?
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Despite his final product not always being the best, he is the sort of player who can get fans on their feet. His pace and power when running with the ball are the kind of attributes that really give his side momentum in attack.
Instead, however, Garde has favoured Charles N’Zogbia in the wide position, which makes you really question the manager’s wisdom. It has been years since N’Zogbia has proven that he has the quality to be a top Premier League player. Traore has made only six league appearances for Villa, all of which have come from the bench.
The Malian is clearly a very talented player, having spent two successful seasons in the Barcelona B side that led to him making his first team debut. With the world-class talent the Catalans have to offer in attack, a move away from the Camp Nou was the best way for Traore to gain valuable first-team experience.
Despite the move, Barcelona obviously saw enough to convince them that the winger has a big future in the game, by inserting a three-year buy-back clause into the deal with Villa. They are aware of his great potential, and will bring him back to Spain if he reaches it.
Even though Villa are as good as down, there is still time for Traore to prove Garde wrong, and perhaps earn himself a summer move to a top division side. He certainly shouldn’t be playing in the Championship.