Spanish football expert raves about potential Aston Villa signing Adama Traore

FC Barcelona

The 19-year-old Barcelona winger is reportedly close to joining Villa on a three-year deal for around £7 million.

With Aston Villa reported to be closing in on a deal for Barcelona winger Adama Traore, Sky Sports’ Spanish football expert Graham Hunter has offered fans good reason to be excited about his potential arrival.

Speaking to Sky Sports News HQ, Hunter gave the former Spain Under-19 international a ringing endorsement and labelled him the kind of signing that will have Villa supporters off their seats.

“He’s potentially exceptional,” said Hunter. “This is the kind of player who explains why people buy season tickets and why Sky have invested in the Premier League again.

“He’s frighteningly exciting. He runs at players, goes past players and has the potential to do things which should be the provenance of a man with the size and centre of gravity of Lionel Messi.

“But, no, he’s like a well-built middle-weight boxer. He’s gifted, hugely thrilling and will unsettle defences.

“The slight clause you have to put is that this is a developing boy of 19, but he’s immensely impressive,” he added. “If Villa pull this deal off, the fans will be ecstatic with the board and with Tim Sherwood.

“He is the type of player who can be something of a remedy to the fact that Villa fans have not only been threatened with relegation but haven’t had excitement.

Adama represents that in 24 carat ways. He is a beautiful talent and it will be very exciting if he goes to that club.”

Traore, known as Adama, was born in Barcelona to Malian parents and joined the Catalan giants in 2004 at the age of eight following a brief spell at neighbouring CE L'Hospitalet.

The 5ft 10in attacker has since risen through the ranks to emerge as one of the club’s top prospects, although he has made just four senior appearances over the past two seasons due to strong competition for places.

Nevertheless, he has established himself as one of Barcelona B’s star performers in that period, racking up eight goals and 18 assists in 63 games in the Spanish second division, while recording an incredible 243 successful dribbles last term – 63 more than anyone else in Europe [h/t Opta].

However, the time has now come for him to taste top-flight action in a major league and, according the likes of Telegraph, Villa look like the club that will offer him the chance to make that next step in his career.

The Telegraph’s report claims that the claret and blues have emerged as the front-runners for his signature over rivals suitors such as Liverpool and Stoke and are now putting the finishing touches to a £7 million deal, which could be completed later this week.

The 19-year-old’s contract will also reportedly contain a buy-back clause on Barca’s insistence but, given the plaudits he has received from the likes of Hunter, that seems like a gamble well worth taking if it means securing the services of one of Europe’s most exciting talents.

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