Tottenham’s hopes of signing Adama Traore from Wolves are officially over following the winger’s return to Barcelona.
Antonio Conte is a fan of the pacy 26-year-old and had been hoping to take him to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. The Italian was planning to make him a wing-back on the right flank, replacing Emerson Royal.
Spurs were closing in on a deal to sign Traore earlier this week, only for Barcelona to muscle in.
And the Spanish club have now announced Traore’s arrival, with the Spain international returning to the club where he came through the ranks.
He has joined Barca on a six-month loan deal and they have the option to make his move permanent for £30million in the summer.
Traore only made four appearances in the Blaugrana’s senior squad during his first spell in Catalonia but will be aiming for a much better impact this time around.
On the switch, Traore said: “I’m so happy to come back here. It’s been a long time since I’ve been here.
‘It’s a special moment’ – Adama Traore
“For me it’s a special moment because it’s been many years. I grew up in this town, I grew up here with my family and friends and I’m very happy [to return].
“I’d just like to give back that happiness on the pitch.”
Traore was in the final 18 months of his Wolves contract, which prompted the exit links to start last year.
The Molineux club had begun preliminary talks over an extension but did not manage to tie the player down.
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) January 29, 2022
On the exit, Wanderers technical director Scott Sellars said: “Adama has always acted with the utmost professionalism, however it is no secret that we have not been able to agree a new contract with him, despite protracted negotiations, and his desire at the moment is to play football elsewhere.
“Everyone knows Barcelona is a city, and club, very close to Adama’s heart, so it is a dream move for him. We have also agreed a very healthy option in the deal should Barcelona wish to make the move permanent this summer.
“We wish Adama the best of luck in Spain, and hope that he plays regularly, has great success and shows everyone what he is capable of.”
Adama Traore is likely to make his Barca debut in next weekend’s clash against La Liga holders Atletico Madrid.
Report explains second Tottenham failure
Meanwhile, a report has given an intriguing reason as to why Luis Diaz is on the verge of joining Liverpool rather than Tottenham.
Spurs were willing to pay an initial £37million, plus £9m in add-ons, to sign the Colombia international. But Liverpool soon raced in to snatch him from their grasp.
The Reds submitted a bid worth €40m (£33.2m) plus €25m (£20.7m) in bonuses on Friday.
That looks set to be enough as Liverpool are now discussing the finer details with Porto. Diaz is preparing to pen a five-year contract with the Anfield club.
Sport Witness, citing Portuguese newspaper Record, attempt to explain why Diaz will link up with Jurgen Klopp, rather than Antonio Conte.
They claim the involvement of renowned agent Jorge Mendes caused problems, and in particular ‘friction’ with another representative.
Mendes gave Paratici the idea of landing Diaz from Porto. But the Portuguese club had already handed the goalscorer’s agent, Raul Costa, the ‘mandate’ to complete a deal with an English club.
This meant the agent fee, worth 10 per cent, would have been doubled in any transfer to Tottenham.
As Liverpool had no agreement with Mendes, their offer was less complex, allowing it to go through more quickly.