Sunderland are still in the market for further additions at the end of the transfer window, despite earmarking £9million for imminent signing Wahbi Khazri.
Tunisian international Khazri is expected to wrap up his move to the Stadium of Light this weekend after French Ligue 1 club Bordeaux accepted Sunderland’s big-money offer for the attacking midfielder.
The 24-year-old flew into the UK yesterday morning ahead of talks over personal terms and a medical, with both Sunderland and Bordeaux expecting the move to go through without a hitch.
But Sunderland boss Sam Allardyce remains in the market for fresh blood, with one more signing likely before Monday’s 11pm deadline, which will probably be a loan deal.
That will not necessarily be Arsenal right-back Mathieu Debuchy, despite Gunners boss Arsene Wenger admitting yesterday that the French right-back could still leave the Emirates.
Sunderland made an enquiry for Debuchy earlier this week, but the Black Cats are looking at other options, despite the ex-Newcastle United man’s eagerness to play first-team football.
Khazri will be the big-money capture of Sunderland’s January transfer window though – adding to the £5m invested earlier this week in centre-half Lamine Kone, as the club have made a statement of intent over their determination to remain in the Premier League.
After Kone’s signing, a forward-thinking player was at the top of Allardyce’s wish-list and Sunderland wasted no time moving for Khazri after their pursuit of Swansea’s Andre Ayew reached a dead end.
Khazri will pen a four-and-a-half year deal at the Stadium of Light, with Bordeaux wishing him well in his new venture.
A statement from the French club said: “The club have reached an agreement with Sunderland AFC for the transfer of Wahbi Khazri.
“The attacking midfielder has a beautiful opportunity with the English club.
“He is therefore authorised to head to England to negotiate with the Premier League club.”
Khazri – who has been tracked by Aston Villa and Celta Vigo – has netted 14 goals in 48 appearances for Bordeaux since joining the French top-flight side from Bastia 18 months ago.
The 24-year-old has been the stand-out figure for Bordeaux this season, along with midfielder Henri Saivet, who joined Newcastle in a £5m deal a fortnight ago.