Former Arsenal defender: 'Self Help' book has made me a better player at QPR

Queen Park Rangers' defender Armand Traore has admitted he has been reading a self help book, which the Senegalese international considers the reason for his improved form.

The former Arsenal player, who can play at left back or left wing, has had a tough time in England since arrival in London in 2006.

In particular Traore came under much criticism following Arsenal's heavy 8-2 defeat against Manchester United in 2011.  After several loan spells to the likes of Portsmouth and Juventus, the Senegal international was deemed surplus to requirements at the Emirates. 

Traore completed his move to Loftus Road in 2011 and featured 23 times for the Hoops in their first season back in the Premier League. Following a red card against Aston VIlla in his debut season for the R's, Traore was branded as a 'disgrace' by then manager Neil Warnock.

Following QPR's relegation to the Premier League last season, Traore has blossomed in the Championship where his pace and tricky have caused defences a lot of problems as Harry Redknapp has employed him further up the pitch.

When speaking to the Get West London, Traore put his form and fitness down a book he has been reading called, The Chimp Paradox, which has enabled him to get inside his own head and stay at the top of his game:

“I’ve been reading a book that tells you there is a weak part of your brain. It explained how you can fight these things,

“Before, if I have a twitch in a hamstring, I think I can’t play. Now if I have the twitch, if it has to be a Grade three (muscle tear), it’s a Grade three – I don’t care.

“There is a chimp in everyone’s head, and the book tells you how to manage the chimp.”.

It looks as though the monkey on his back and got into his head and has told him that he is more effective in an attacking role.

"I’ll play anywhere I’m asked, but I feel more free in midfield and feel comfortable, whereas I always had worries in defence,

“I might have given the impression I don’t care, but ask my wife, I really do care for QPR. God knows I do care because I want to win.

“I don’t want people to say he was as failure at QPR as well. You know what I mean?"

The outspoken Traore will look to control the chimp inside his head when QPR travel to Birmingham City on Saturday to revive their automatic promotion ambitions.

images: © wonker, © Tom Cuppens

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