Traore closing in on Grealish’s Aston Villa Premier League mark

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Thanks to his goal against the Foxes, the Burkina Faso international is within touching distance of the Englishman’s mark for the Lions this term

Bertrand Traore is fast closing in on a notable Jack Grealish Premier League mark for Aston Villa in the 2020-21 campaign.

The 25-year-old Burkina Faso international found the net as the Claret and Blue Army bowed 2-1 at home to Leicester City in Sunday’s English top-flight showdown.

With James Maddison and Harvey Barnes handing the Foxes a two-goal lead in the first 23 minutes of the encounter, the 25-year-old Burkina Faso star pulled one back for the hosts three minutes into the second half.

Anwar El Ghazi’s delivery was tapped to John McGinn who tried to find the net by himself. However, the African managed to hack a finish home past Kasper Schmeichel.

Since Traore’s first English top-flight start having joined Dean Smith’s squad from Ligue 1 side Olympique Lyon, he has now been directly involved in eight goals in the English top-flight this term – five goals and three assists.

Only Grealish has been directly involved in more goals for the Villa Park giants in the Premier League than him – six goals and four assists.

Despite a late rally from the hosts, they were unable to avoid a ninth loss in the ongoing campaign.

Manager Dean Smith lamented the absence of inspirational Grealish against Brendan Rodgers’ team.

“I have been made aware that on social media there have been rumours he wasn’t going to play,” he told the media.

“If it has been coming out of our training ground then I will find out where that is coming from and reprimand it.

“You are always going to miss a top-class player, take Jack Grealish out of any team and you’d miss him but the XI that was out there was good enough to win.

“Jack is going to be a loss because he is an exceptional player with a great personality, but we still had enough there to beat Leicester.”

Alongside Egyptian defender Ahmed Elmohamady, Traore was in action from start to finish while Mahmoud ‘Trezeguet’ Hassan replaced El-Ghazi in the 67th minute.

Whereas Zimbabwe international Marvelous Nakamba and English teenager of Nigerian descent Carney Chukwuemeka were unused substitutes.

Wilfred Ndidi’s Leicester City have a date with Slavia Prague in the Europa League on Thursday, and Villa must defeat Leeds United in their next outing to revive their European hopes.

 

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