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Jurgen Klopp Praises 'Big Talent' Adama Traore Ahead of Liverpool vs. Wolves

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistDecember 28, 2019

WOLVERHAMPTON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 27: Adama Traore of Wolverhampton Wanderers competes with Rodrigo of Manchester City during the Premier League match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Manchester City at Molineux on December 27, 2019 in Wolverhampton, United Kingdom. (Photo by Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images)
Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has highlighted Wolverhampton Wanderers winger Adama Traore as a danger man ahead of the clash between the sides in the Premier League on Sunday.

Wolves produced a memorable performance on Friday, as they came from two goals down to beat 10-man Manchester City 3-2 at Molineux. The result means City stay in third and Liverpool remain 13 points clear of second-place Leicester City at the top of the Premier League table.

Traore was the star man for Wolves on the night, netting the first goal to trigger his side's comeback. The winger will be hoping to wreak similar havoc against the Reds, and Klopp has identified the threat he can pose prior to the contest, per FourFourTwo:

"He finally found his manager who found a position for him. At Middlesbrough he was exceptional, but somebody had to give him the right information.

"[He is] A big, big talent. You would never have thought he is that young, but he is still very young, and now he has found [the right manager]. It was always clear it would happen one day, and now it has. Good for Wolves!

"He is really dangerous. In a big space [Leicester striker] Jamie Vardy is difficult to defend, but I would say Traore is even more difficult to defend because his speed is exceptional."

Up against City left-back Benjamin Mendy, Traore was able to dominate and was the catalyst for one of Wolves' most memorable Premier League wins:

Although Traore isn't the most prolific of wide players, he's flourished in the final third against Pep Guardiola's team this season:

The Sportsman Bet @TheSportsmanBet

🇪🇸 Adama Traore's goals this season... - Goal vs Man City - Goal vs Man City - Goal vs Spurs - Goal vs Man City More than just a rapid winger... #WOLMCI https://t.co/Pq9MOD2g6G

Traore's potential has been apparent since his time as a Barcelona academy star, although finding consistency has been a challenge for him.

Following stints with Aston Villa and Middlesborough, he's been able to settle into a groove at Wolves. After showing flashes of quality after the joining the club last season, this term he's become a regular under Nuno Espirito Santo and has flourished.

Traore is terrifying Premier League defences on a regular basis, as his improved decision-making is complementing the extraordinary physical qualities he has.

Sports writer Zito Madu thinks Traore is benefitting from astute management at Wolves:

Zito @_Zeets

This is also justification for my (very biased) belief that the ability to dribble is the most valuable offensive skill

According to B/R Football's Dean Jones, Traore's former club has taken an interest in him again:

Dean Jones @DeanJonesBR

Adama Traore so good again and has been watched by scouts from some big clubs this season, including Barcelona.

It will be intriguing to see whether Traore and Wolves can be as effective against Liverpool as they were against City. The match is set to be challenge for the visitors, as they will have less than 48 hours to recover from Friday's heroic display.

Liverpool have had an extra day's rest after they coasted to a 4-0 win at Leicester City on Boxing Day. Given the gushing praise Klopp had for Traore, you suspect the manager would have relished the extra time he had to devise a plan to stop him.