Shades of Payet: West Ham can strike gold with wing wizard who’s “very hard to stop” – opinion

According to soccer Insider, West Ham have joined the race to sign former Chelsea starlet Bertrand Traore.

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The Burkina Faso international left Stamford Bridge three years ago to join French giants Lyon, and has enjoyed a fairly successful time with the club – he has scored 33 goals and provided 17 assists in total.

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However, soccer Insider claim that Lyon are now ready to sell the 24-year-old this summer, and that along with the Hammers, the likes of Burnley, Newcastle and Crystal Palace are all in the running to bring him back to the Premier League.

The report adds that “Scottish agent and intermediary Paul Tait has been given the UK mandate by Lyon to find buyers for the 52-cap star”.

Shades of Dimitri Payet

Things may have ended on a sour note, but there’s no doubting that Dimitri Payet was one of the biggest transfer success stories at West Ham in recent years.

The Frenchman produced moments of magic that had supporters absolutely adoring him, and whilst Traore may not be a classic play-maker like the former Hammers hero, he does possess some of the same kind of technical skills that made Payet an instant fans favourite.

Last season in the Champions League, the 24-year-old averaged 2.2 dribbles and 1.8 shots per game, scoring against Benfica too. Payet was known for his ability to beat players and leave them flummoxed with a piece of skill, and Traore is in that same mould.

His former teammate at Chelsea, Papy Djilobodji said: “Bertrand (Traore), whom I knew in Chelsea, technically he is very, very good: with his feints, he is very hard to stop.”

Predominantly a right-winger and cutting onto his stronger left foot, West Ham could land a player who could add that element of unpredictability to their attack. If the Hammers are looking for someone too bring some more thrust going forward, then Traore could be that man.