Bertrand Traore has today completed a permanent transfer to French top-flight side Lyon.
The attacker, who joined Chelsea from Association Jeunes Espoirs De Bobo-Dioulasso in his native Burkina Faso, became a first-team player at Stamford Bridge only a few days after his 20th birthday and proved capable of providing important back-up and support for Diego Costa during the 2015/16 season.
He scored in three consecutive games early in 2016, in the FA Cup at MK Dons and then at home to Newcastle and Manchester City. There soon followed a Chelsea Goal of the Season contender – a special left-footed strike in a home draw to Stoke.
Traore spent last season on loan at Ajax whom he helped to runners-up spot in the Dutch top flight and the Europa League final where they were defeated by Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United. In the semi-final Ajax beat Traore’s new club Lyon. He scored two of the goals.
It was Mourinho who handed Traore his Chelsea debut in a home Champions League game against Maccabi Tel Aviv in September 2015. His first Premier League action came three months later with Guus Hiddink continuing to select the young player once the Dutchman had taken over the reins midway through the campaign.
Earlier in his Chelsea career Traore went on loan to Vitesse and he was a Burkina Faso international throughout his time with the Blues, making the Team of the Tournament at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations.
His new club Lyon finished fourth in Ligue 1 last season so Traore will again compete in the Europa League.
We wish him well for his career in France and thank him for his contribution at Chelsea.