Reports: Allardyce eyeing up Lyon winger Rachid Ghezzal

Sunderland will continue to look across the continent for acquisitions.

Reports: Allardyce eyeing up Lyon winger Rachid Ghezzal
Ghezzal is attracting from Sunderland and a host of other Premier League sides (Photo: Getty)

Sunderland will continue to shop abroad as they prepare for another season in the Premier League.

Sam Allardyce's side confirmed survival with a game to spare after beating Everton 3-0 at the Stadium of Light, sending Norwich City and North East rivals Newcastle United down to the Championship.

As well as Jermain Defoe's goals, the Black Cats' survival was largely down to Allardyce's January signings, which saw four players arrive from foreign shores. Excluding Dame N'Doye, the January arrivals played a key role in another great escape on Wearside, and Sunderland are now looking for more new players to ensure they stay out of the relegation battle next season.

Lyon winger on Sunderland shortlist?

Tunisian winger Wahbi Khazri was a huge hit after arriving from Bordeaux, and Sunderland may now look at another African winger to enhance their attacking talent.

Lyon's Rachid Ghezzal is believed to be a target on Wearside by local media, with the Algerian midfielder about to enter the last year of his contract in France. 

Ghezzal is being targeted by other Premier League clubs, as well as sides in Spain, but Sunderland's links in France could give them the edge and help them get their man.

The 24-year-old scored eight goals in 29 appearances this season in Ligue 1, and has also been capped five times for Algeria, where he plays in the same national side as Premier League winner Riyad Mahrez.

It's no surprise Allardyce is looking to France again, such as been the success of players like Wahbi Khazri (pictured) and Lamine Kone. (Photo: Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)
It's no surprise Allardyce is looking to France again, such as been the success of players like Wahbi Khazri (pictured) and Lamine Kone. (Photo: Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Are Sunderland right to shop abroad?

As Premier League teams receive more money through the latest TV deal, the price of domestic-based players is on the increase, making it much more appealing for smaller clubs to look elsewhere for new signings.

January saw Lamine Kone, Jan Kirchhoff and Khazri hit the ground running and quickly settle into English football, but this is not the same for every player who arrives from Europe. 

Newcastle have been victims of this in previous years, signing cheap players from France to avoid paying an inflated price for domestic talent. They have also been victims of the price boost, with England internationals Jonjo Shelvey and Andros Townsend costing the Magpies £12 million each. 

One difference between Newcastle and Sunderland's recruitment is the man who is deciding who to bring in. The majority of Newcastle's signings were made by chief scout Graham Carr, whereas manager Sam Allardyce made the decision to bring in talent from abroad, after scouting them himself.

Should Allardyce continue to run the rule over signings at Sunderland, they could see a spell of success from the European market, and in turn avoid the inflated price of domestic players.