Bertrand Traore scores in first start as Aston Villa edge past Bristol City in EFL Cup third round

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Bertrand Traore scored on his return to English football with Aston Villa getting the better of Bristol City 3-0 in the EFL Cup third round at Ashton Gate on Thursday night.

The 25-year-old Burkinabe joined the Villans last week after a three-year association with Olympique Lyon.

He was unable to make his debut in their Premier League match against 10-man Sheffield United last weekend, but was thrust into the starting XI this time alongside Anwar El-Ghazi and Keinan Davis in attack.

Villa were clearly not here to waste any time and they got their first goal in the 11th minute via El-Ghazi, the assist coming from Davis.

It took just three minutes for Dean Smith’s men to add a second and it came from Traore with a sublime effort. Jacob Ramsey sent a long ball to the former Chelsea player and he cheekily volleyed it into the back of the net with his first touch from a tight angle on the right.

Villa were well in control of proceedings from here but still had time for one more goal in the 73rd minute from Ollie Watkins, who tapped in from close range after connecting with Egypt international Mahmoud 'Trezeguet' Hassan's pass.

Traore played for 70 minutes until Trezeguet took his place. The Burkina Faso international had a fine first outing in the colours of Villa, producing a shot on target which was his goal while also having a blocked shot.

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He also had 44 touches on the ball, 26 accurate passes (86.7%), won six of nine total duels and made one interception and two tackles.

He moved to Villa Park after falling out of favour at Lyon where he scored just four goals and provided five assists in 35 competitive appearances, his lowest goal involvement for the French giants. Overall, he had a hand in 50 goals (33 goals, 17 assists) for Les Gones, playing 126 times.

Traore’s career began at Chelsea where he played 16 times between 2014 and 2017, scoring four goals and providing an assist. During that time, he was loaned out to Vitesse Arnhem and Ajax in the Netherlands.