A young forward who has suddenly been propelled into English football, we take a look at wunderkind, Amad Diallo who recently signed for Manchester United from Atalanta FC. Manchester United have seen enough of Amad Diallo Traoré to spend €25 million on him after only having made only six senior appearances. But who is the youngster from Ivory Coast, what are his assets, and why is he so popular?
Diallo was based in Abidjan and relocated to Italy when he was ten years old, where he was discovered by local football club Boca Barco, along with his younger brother Hamid. The teenager chose Atalanta in 2015 after outshining other players at a local Christmas tournament and started his progress in their Primavera team. His youth results drew notice, and after scoring four minutes into his senior debut – becoming the first 2002-born player to score in Serie A – major clubs started circling for his signature.
Style of Play
Diallo is a perfect right-sided winger, which allows him to separate the fullback and beat him one-on-one. For the first ten yards, the 18-year-old displays incredible near coordination and pace, displaying light footwork and fast changes of direction to build goalscoring possibilities. Despite his apparent talent, 59 minutes of Serie A football is insufficient to draw significant conclusions. If he is given regular opportunities, the teenager's skill set appears to be ideal for a United side that has required a true right-sided winger since Nani's departure in 2015. Diallo is a very solid player on the right side of the field, and his fast feet and tendency to go inside or outside make him elusive for opposing defences.
This season, he has the following advantages over his Atalanta Primavera teammates:
The majority of dribbles
The vast majority of shots
The majority of important passes
Highest contribution in terms of xG/xA per 90 minutes
Despite his game focusing on intensity – which has had inconsistent results – he outperforms his peers in terms of attacking contribution.
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Since arriving at Carrington, he has had quite several games for the club getting minutes in the Premier League 2, the Premier League as well as Europa League, while scoring 5 and assisting 4.
Diallo indeed has a promising future, but as he arrives at Old Trafford, aspirations must be controlled. His statistics are positive, and YouTube clips show he may be the next Lionel Messi, but his lack of experience (and eventual transition) must be closely handled to avoid overexposure. However, there is a sense of deliberation around Manchester United, who are very well in attacking places, which suggests that he will be eased into the scene for the time being.
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