Adama Traore Receives First Mali Call-Up

Wolverhampton Wanderers winger Adama Traore has been called up to the Mali senior team for the first time, but the player is yet to make a decision on his future with a national team.

Malian football coach Mohamed Magassouba revealed his selection for the international friendly against Ghana and Iran.

Alongside Adama Traore, FC Porto’s Moussa Marega, Southampton’s Moussa Djenepo and Everton’s Abdoulaye Doucoure also getting his first international call-up made the 31-man list.

Traore was called up by Luis Enrique for Spain in August for the UEFA Nations League matches against Germany and Ukraine, but he was dropped after testing positive for the coronavirus.

In 2019, the winger who has represented Spain in the U16, U17, U19 and U21 levels was also called up to the Spanish senior national team for the Euro 2020 qualifying matches against Malta and Romania in November, but he pulled out due to an injury.

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In March 2020, the Malian Football Association made an attempt to convince Traore to change his international allegiance.

Frederic Kanoute who also made a similar international decision during his playing days despite being born and raised in France says he was told by the Malian FA to speak with the Wolves star.

“If he is listening to me right now – I am heading your way, Adama,” Kanoute said.

“The Mali FA has called me to say, ‘Please, please go and see him because you speak perfect Spanish so you can convince him,’ and so on.

“I would like him to [play for Mali] but I will tell him the truth that it is obviously going to be a struggle and that it is not going to be so comfortable to play for an African national team.

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“But the people give you back so much and he has the opportunity to make something big with a very, very talented generation that we have in Mali, so I will try to convince him.”

For Wolves, Traore scored six goals and made 12 assists in 54 appearances in the 2019-2020 season.

The Malian national team is set to face the Black Stars of Ghana in October and Iran four days later.

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