Chelsea F.C. have completed the signing of midfielder Bertrand Traore from Burkinabe Premier League side Association Jeunes Espoirs De Bobo-Dioulasso for an undisclosed fee, Sky Sports reports.
The Burkina Faso international, 18, has agreed a a four-and-a-half-year deal with the Blues after a successful pre-season trial under Jose Mourinho.
Traore made three appearances on Chelsea’s pre-season tour of Asia, netting two goals.
He will join fellow starlets Christian Atsu, Cristián Cuevas, Lucas Piazón, Nathaniel Chalobah, Thorgan Hazard, Tomáš Kalas and Wallace at Stamford Bridge.
“It was a good experience with all the senior players and I learned a lot from them,” Traore told the Blues’ official website.
“I was very proud, so it was a dream for me to be there every day and playing games. Of course I was a little bit nervous but after two or three days I was okay.
“On the pitch I was comfortable, I wasn’t nervous once I was on the pitch. Jose Mourniho spoke a lot during training and he is one of the best managers, maybe the best in the world. He is a very good person and it is a dream for me to work with him. I can now say I am living a dream.
“I’m an attacking midfielder. I can play in the number 10 position, I can play on the wings and I’m good on the ball. I can shoot well and am strong in a one v one situation, so I can score goals.”
Chelsea, fresh off an impressive 3-0 New Year’s Day win over Southampton at St Mary’s, will face Derby County in Round 3 of the FA Cup on Sunday, 5 January 2014.
Best Bet of the Match: Chelsea to win both halves (2/1)
Besiktas keen on Lescott
The agent of Manchester City defender Joleon Lescott, James Featherstone of OmniSports Management, has confirmed Turkish Süper Lig giants Besiktas are interested in signing his client.
Lescott, whose current contract at the Etihad Stadium is set to expires at the end of the season, has been linked with an exit from Manchester following the summer arrival of Martin Demichelis.
At the moment, the England international, 31, is behind the aforementioned Demichelis, Matija Nastasic and Vincent Kompany in Manuel Pellegrini’s pecking order.
“Joleon is able to talk to interested clubs now as he is in the final six months of his contract and a number of clubs have expressed an interest in him.
“However, at the moment Joleon is focused on doing his best for Manchester City and is ready to give his all when called upon.
“Joleon is a Manchester City player, so if any club are interested in signing him prior to his contract expiring they have to agree something with Manchester City first and then we will see if we can take it any further.”
Lescott has made 13 appearances in all competitions for Manchester City this term, but will likely need regular first-team football in order to be named to the England squad for next year’s World Cup in Brazil.