Another international break is nearing its end and Liverpool are only four days away from being back in action, but four days is plenty of time for shameless outlets to make up — or, as in this case, regurgitate — nonsense transfer rumours.
According to Catalonian outlet El Nacional, Jürgen Klopp is “waiting with open arms” for the arrival of Adama Traoré, with the Wolves attacker one of several names on the German’s shortlist, alongside Karim Adeyemi and Barcelona’s Pedri. One of these is not like the others.
Traoré is built like a cartoon character and remains one of world football’s most prolific dribblers, but he is also perhaps the most prominent current member of the I Can Fix Him club — previously helmed by Mario Balotelli, albeit for different reasons — as manager after manager have tried and failed to make him into a productive attacker.
Despite his technical and physical attributes, the 25-year old’s style of dribbling does not seem to translate into the more congested areas in and around the 18-yard box, and his lackluster passing and off the ball movement do not permit him to be a viable playmaker or finisher, leaving him as mostly a ball progresser through the middle third of the field and then largely a passenger the rest of the way.
A lack of pressing further underlines the poor tactical fit the Spaniard would offer Klopp, and although his dynamism could make him a useful piece in transition when the game is stretched, the Reds already have elite players for this phase of the game, and Traoré is simply more valuable for Wolves than he ever will be for Liverpool.
Two or three years ago, the promise of untapped potential might have made the la Masia product an intriguing prospect at the right price, but now, two months away from this 26th birthday, Adama is what he is, and what he is is simply not a viable target for a club with Liverpool’s demands.