Aston Villa journalist Ashley Preece has revealed Unai Emery’s plans for Bertrand Traore following his return to the Midlands club.
The previous summer transfer window saw the winger join Turkish club Basaksehir FK on loan.
After making 18 appearances for Basaksehir across all competitions, scoring three goals and providing one assist, the 27-year-old was recalled by Villa after he picked up a knee injury last month.
With the Burkina Faso international now back in the Midlands, some behind-the-scenes details have surfaced regarding the attacker’s next step.
In a recent report for the Birmingham Mail, Preece had this to say about Traore’s situation at Villa and what the remainder of the season could look like for him.
He said: “Head coach Emery will look to use Traore as a central striker on occasion with Villa’s options limited in that position after opting to wait until the summer window to add real quality up front.”
Villa signed Traore back in the 2020 summer transfer window from Olympique Lyon in a deal worth a reported fee of £17m.
During his time at the club, the winger has scored eight goals and delivered seven assists in 48 appearances across all competitions.
Do you think Traore will have a future at Villa under Emery?
Hailed as a “marvellous technician” by former Villa manager Dean Smith, the former Lyon figure ended his debut league campaign with the Villans having found the net seven times and supplied six assists in 36 appearances.
His overall performances in that season ultimately earned him a rating of 6.85/10 from WhoScored, making him the eighth-highest rated player at the club.
This shows that the player certainly has what it takes to be a useful attacking option for Villa, which is what he’ll presumably be aiming to be if he eventually does get deployed in a centre-forward role.
Moving forward, with the winger looking to make a return to training next week, if he can get his fitness up and then take any opportunity he gets to play before the end of the campaign, Traore could have a great chance to prove himself to Emery.