Armand Traore Departs For QPR

CESENA, ITALY - MARCH 12: Armand Traore of Juventus competes with Emanuele Giaccherini of Cesena during the Serie A match between AC Cesena and Juventus FC at Dino Manuzzi Stadium on March 12, 2011 in Cesena, Italy. (Photo by Roberto Serra/Getty Images)

Arsenal have confirmed the departure of 21 year old left sided player (there is no way in hell I'm calling him a defender) Armand Traore to QPR, whom he joins on a permanent deal, signing a 3 year contract. Arsenal did not disclose the price (leading some QPR fans to pray that they got him on a free), but the reported fee is £1.2m. Yes, someone paid actual money for Traore, even after Sunday's performance. No word on whether Neil Warnock is actually stuck in 2006.

Traore joined Arsenal in 2005, and was the lesser known 17 year old in Arsenal's Carling Cup run of 2006-07, starting every match but one, including both legs of the semi-final against Tottenham and the final against Chelsea. At just 17, Traore was physically impressive, showing great pace and also a Gael Clichy like in anticipation and intercepting abilities. However, despite several runs in the first team, including 2009-10 when Gael Clichy and Kieran Gibbs suffered long term injuries, Traore never managed to put his potential into actual ability, and was loaned out last season to Juventus. Due to injury, he only made 12 appearances for Juventus before returning to Arsenal this summer, where he was expected to be the backup for Kieran Gibbs. It was clear, however, that he wasn't highly thought of by Arsene Wenger: Despite being fit enough, Wenger preferred to play Bacary Sagna out of position against Udinese and Carl Jenkinson at right back. Sunday's performance against United, where he got beaten several times by Nani and Ashley Young, and Chris Smalling, and then smiled afterwards showed why Wenger didn't trust him. 

Luckily, QPR either didn't send scouts to the United game, or preferred to see it as a one off. Traore should be replaced soon by Andre Santos, whose transfer should be confirmed by tomorrow evening. We'll of course have that updated when it is confirmed. 

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