Middlesbrough midfielder Adama Traore looks set to stay at the Riverside Stadium this summer despite interest from Ligue 1 outfit Lille, reports The Gazette Live.
The 21-year-old only moved to the Riverside Stadium last year following a less than successful time at Aston Villa, in which he scored just once in 10 Premier League games as the Villans were relegated from the top-flight in the 2015/16 campaign.
And he hasn’t fared much better in the North East either, with the former Spain Under-19 international showing flashes of brilliance but ultimately contributing just one assist last term, while failing to net at all in 31 games for Boro.
And it appeared earlier in the summer that Traore was on his way out of the club, with French side Lille reportedly interested in his services, yet recent reports suggest that Middlesbrough will not allow the 21-year-old to leave the club before Thursday’s 11pm deadline.
Garry Monk’s men were installed as favourites for promotion over the summer but haven’t quite made a start that backs up those claims, with two wins and two defeats from their opening five matches leaving them ninth in the table, and already eight points adrift of leaders Cardiff City.
And although he was unable to regularly turn his moments of magic into direct contributions last season, manager Monk likely feels that Traore would be an asset to his squad in the remainder of the Championship season, hence their decision to refuse him a move away this week.
The Verdict: Adama Traore somewhat flattered to deceive last season for Middlesbrough, with moments of brilliance often ending up with little to no end product, and ultimately frustration among the Boro faithful.
But there’s little doubt that the 21-year-old has talent, and Lille clearly see it as they have shown genuine interest in the Spaniard over the summer, although they look set to be thwarted in their pursuits.
Middlesbrough manager Garry Monk will be well aware that the pressure is on to achieve promotion back to the Premier League this term, and having many different options in the squad, and certainly one like Traore, is likely to be invaluable as the season progresses.
Middlesbrough fans… what do you make of the news? Let us know your thoughts and opinions in the comments below!