Offloading Adama Traore could be the best business Middlesbrough pull off this transfer window.
Rated at being worth £18 million, he is being chased by several Premier League clubs including Huddersfield Town and Wolverhampton Wanderers. The 22-year-old winger is an exciting prospect but comes with significant baggage that diminishes his worth to a club.
The Spanish youngster had an indifferent start to the season but came alive after New Year to underline his potential. Five goals and nine assists were accompanied by a hoard of man of the match awards. This came about from his buccaneering style of play. He completed an astounding 7.1 successful dribbles per game. The next highest in the league was Jeremie Boga. He completed 3.4 per game. This has made him a target, being fouled 2.5 times per game.
There can be no doubt that he is a tremendous talent. Yet he has his problems. Numerous managers have complained about his attitude and approach. Garry Monk dropped him for being late for the team bus; Aitor Karanka commented on the selfish nature of his playing style. His game focuses on himself and not the team.
Meanwhile, discipline remains an issue. Red cards in crucial games against Sunderland and Aston Villa, the latter after four minutes, showed a reckless nature and immaturity that needs to be ironed out.
The correct manager can make the most out of him. There were signs that Tony Pulis has started to figure him out, but large holes in his game remain. For £18 million, Middlesbrough could purchase a less single-minded player.