Who is Ahmed Abdelkader? The young goalkeeper set to become Sunderland's new summer signing
Sunderland look set to clinch the signing of young goalkeeper Ahmed Abdelkader – but who is he?
The 20-year-old has been pictured in a Sunderland shirt at the Academy of Light as he looks set to become the club’s second summer signing, following in the footsteps of Conor McLaughlin in making the move to the North East.
But what do we know about the youngster? Here’s full details on the man looking set to become the Black Cats’ second capture of the transfer window:
Key details:Age: 20
Where has he played before Sunderland?Despite his young age, Abdelkader has already racked-up a few air miles in his pursuit of a professional career.
The stopper spent his formulative years in the academy of French club EA Guingamp, who have of course played host to Papy Djilobodji and Didier Ndong in recent months.
Abdelkader then went on to join NAD Polis Chrysochous in the Cypriot third tier, gaining some vital experience of senior football.
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He also spent time on trial with Premier League side Leicester City, but failed to earn a deal at the King Power Stadium after an extended stint.
Why has he signed for Sunderland?
Abdelkader’s signing is a fairly logical one for the Black Cats.
Following the departures of young stopper Max Stryjek and Max Johnstone, the Black Cats have just Anthony Patterson as an option between the sticks for Elliott Dickman’s under-23 side.
Further recruits, therefore, were a necessity in that position – hence the signing of the Algerian youngster.
It looks certain that he and Patterson will be battling it out for the starting berth in Premier League 2 next season.
Will Jack Ross still sign another goalkeeper after this signing?
Yes – Ross is still expected to dip into the market for another experienced stopper to challenge Jon McLaughlin, who will start the season as number one.
Abdelkader is undoubtedly one for the future, with a goalkeeper ready for the rigours of League One likely to be recruited, rather than a youngster thrust into a senior environment.