In this FPL scouting report, licensed football coach @FPLLens looks at Adama Traore. The Spaniard has posted some incredible attacking stats but is yet to deliver a single return.

Is the £6.0m midfielder a sleeping FPL giant? Or is he lacking a final product for a reason?

We already know that Traore is excelling as far as underlying stats go. Filtering Fantasy Football Hub’s OPTA Stats Tool by midfielders, we can see that Traore is second for shots, joint-seventh for xG, joint-top for xA and fifth for expected points.

In other words, the Wolves playmaker should be doing much better than he actually is. He has enough attacking threat, as well as the creativity, to be great value for his price-point.

If we’re to consider the Spaniard ahead of Wolves’ great fixture run, we need to understand why he’s underperforming.

One answer might be bad luck. We often see players underperform their stats in the short-term, but usually they return to the mean in due course. The same can be said for over-performing players too. Usually any purple-patch that defies the underlying stats is short-lived.

In this article, however, I argue that Traore’s lack of FPL points is due to something far more tangible than bad fortune.

I think it’s down to the way Bruno Lage is currently using him. If this doesn’t change, I don’t expect Traore to realise his potential as an FPL asset anytime soon.

Let’s look more closely at some specific examples.

Adama Traore vs Leicester – Case Study #1

The first set of images is from the Leicester match.

Traore FPL

This image shows the beginning of one of Wolves’ three counter-attacks so far this season, which is good for joint-most in the division. Lage’s high midfield press creates this opportunity as Adama splits Daniel Amartey (£4.1m) on his left and Caglar Soyuncu (£5.0m) on his right.

Adama’s first touch is Haaland-esque as he glides by the two defenders.

His second touch is a big let down in this play. As Traore winds up to take this shot, the ball is too far behind his plant foot, affecting the subsequent shot.

A late hip adjustment sends the ball wide of its target.

Traore is much better at going around defenders from the outside than through defenders on the inside.

Adama Traore vs Leicester – Case Study #2

The next series is from the same match. Adama wins the ball in the air by going through Jannik Vestergaard (£4.9m), no small feat.

The play sets up a nice opportunity for him to volley this ball into the net. The near-post is well-covered by Kasper Schmeichel (£5.0m), but a powerful enough strike could sneak in there.

Adama once again shows his discomfort with playing on the left side of the field. Feathering a ball with the inside of his foot is not really his skillset yet he feels compelled to try it anyway.

Adama Traore vs Spurs – Case Study #3

The final series is from the match against Spurs. Traore creates space for himself with quick lateral movements.

His discomfort on his left begins to show here as he does not take advantage of the opportunity to cross the ball.

After stepping over the ball with his left leg, he ends up in his comfort zone with the ball on his right. The centre of the field has become compact at this point and Traore has few options.

He ends the move with a prayer of a ball into the centre that Raul Jimenez (£7.4m) cannot get to.

This play should have been a simple one and it was overcomplicated because Traore is out of his element on the left.

Is Traore a Good FPL Option?

When playing on the left-hand side, Traore promises so much but delivers so little. He should be good, but it’s awkward and ultimately a little pointless.

As mentioned, his stats are very good so far. Opportunities are in abundance: what’s lacking is the finishing product.

The real FPL potential of Traore will only be realised if he plays on the right. Wolves have created the most chances in the league from the right side (17). If Adama can get these extra chances on his better side, he could explode in FPL.

I’ll be waiting to see whether Lage redeploys his danger man. Until then, I fear Traore could be in for a frustrating 2021/22 campaign.