Regret for Sunderland as one-time reported target Sebastien Haller makes £45m West Ham move

Image has been digitally enhanced.) Sebastien Haller of Frankfurt looks on during the Bundesliga match between Eintracht Frankfurt and 1. FSV Mainz 05 at Commerzbank-Arena on May 12, 2019...

Sunderland were once linked with new West Ham United signing Sebastien Haller.

Image has been digitally enhanced.) Sebastien Haller of Frankfurt looks on during the Bundesliga match between Eintracht Frankfurt and 1. FSV Mainz 05 at Commerzbank-Arena on May 12, 2019...

Sunderland may have plenty of reason for regret this week as a reported former transfer target Sebastien Haller has completed a club record transfer to Premier League side West Ham United.

According to The Sun, the Hammers have paid out a whopping £45 million to sign the striker on a five-year deal from Bundesliga side Eintracht Frankfurt, eclipsing the deal for Felipe Anderson 12 months ago.

Sunderland, however, reportedly had the chance to sign the Frenchman in 2015. The Black Cats and Brentford were among his suitors according to L’Equipe, with FC Utrecht wanting a mere £5.7 million at the time for him.

 

Both clubs seemingly passed up the chance to sign Haller, who was 21 at the time, and the 6ft 3inch striker went on to join Frankfurt where his goal scoring exploits have since prompted a West Ham mega-money deal.

Sunderland were at the time managed by Dick Advocaat. It’s surprising the Dutchman didn’t feel fit to move for Haller who had netted 11 goals in 17 games during his debut campaign in Advocaat’s native Holland.

The Black Cats that summer instead shelled out big money for the likes of Fabio Borini and Jeremain Lens, with the latter managing just three goals in 20 Premier League games before being farmed out on loan.

Sebastien Haller of Eintracht Frankfurt celebrates after scoring his team's third goal during the Bundesliga match between Eintracht Frankfurt and FC Schalke 04 at Commerzbank-Arena on...

Lens has since permanently signed for Besiktas, where his record stands at two goals in 52 games. Borini has had slightly better luck, featuring for Italian giants AC Milan after his permanent move in 2018.

Sam Allardyce managed to save Sunderland from the drop in the 2015-16 campaign. However, a year later and relegation to the Championship was confirmed. Who knows what difference Haller could have made with the Black Cats now in League One?

A general view of the Stadium of Light during the Sky Bet Championship match between Sunderland and Middlesbrough at Stadium of Light on February 24, 2018 in Sunderland, England.

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