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Sport: Spurs closing in on £20m Traore deal

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Tottenham Hotspur are closing in on a £20 million deal for Wolverhampton Wanderers winger Adama Traore.

Spurs had a bid of £15m for the Spanish international rejected last week, with Wolves understood to value Traore at £25m.

Tottenham are reported to be close to signing Wolves' Adama Traore for about £20m © Associated Press Tottenham are reported to be close to signing Wolves' Adama Traore for about £20m

However, there is now the expectation a comprise fee can be reached for the 25-year-old winger, who has been with Wolves since 2018, before Monday's transfer deadline.

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Traore was on the bench for Saturday's 2-1 win over Brentford but came on for the final 15 minutes and saw a goal ruled out by VAR for offside.

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He has been a long-time target of Spurs, who were in talks to sign Traore at the end of the summer transfer window. That interest has remained despite the change of head coach from ex-Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo to Antonio Conte.

Traore is out of contract in June 2023 and a new deal has been on the table for 15 months, with his current club keen to keep hold of him. If Wolves and Spurs are able to agree a fee, it is not expected personal terms would be an issue.

Along with pursuing Traore, Tottenham boss Conte is keen to strengthen his squad further with the addition of a midfielder and a forward before the January window closes.

The latter could come in the form of teenage Angers forward Mohamed Ali-Cho, who is reported to have been offered to the Premier League side.

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The 18-year-old, who was at Everton before moving to Angers 18 months ago, is valued at up to £16.8m.

Ali-Cho has played five times for France U21s and is reportedly also attracting interest from Bundesliga outfit Borussia Dortmund.

Is Traore an upgrade for Tottenham?

Analysis by Jack Wilkinson

Before determining whether Adama Traore would improve Tottenham, it's important to establish the role he would play were he to trade Wolverhampton for north London. After all, he's not going to dislodge Harry Kane or Heung-Min Son, Spurs' prolific and trusted attacking duo.

With Steven Bergwijn the subject of interest from Ajax, Traore could be brought in as a like-for-like replacement for the Dutchman, he could provide direct competition for Lucas Moura, while there has even been talk that he could be brought to Spurs in a wing-back capacity.

Were Traore to move to Spurs, he would undoubtedly upgrade the entertainment factor at the club. Traore's dribbles completed, and dribble success rate are off the scale compared to Bergwijn, and Moura, and he makes almost five times the number of crosses from open play per 90 minutes.

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But reservations arise over Traore's suitability in perhaps the most-crucial area - end product. In 18 Premier League appearances for Wolves this season, the Spaniard is yet to score or assist, and across his top-flight career in England, he registers a goal or assist at half the rate of Moura and Bergwign.

Could it be the case that Traore's creativity is not fully utilised at Wolves? Could it be truly harnessed by Conte in a strikeforce that features Kane and Son? Those are the questions for Tottenham to consider, and ones that whet the appetite for Spurs fans after a so far barren January.

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