West Ham target another French-based forward to boost options

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After a plunge into the French leagues came up trumps with the bargain signing of Diafra Sakho, West Ham are planning another raid across the Channel, this time with Guingamp’s Claudio Beauvue the man of interest.

At the start of the campaign many Hammers fans were worrying about whether Ligue 2 striker Sakho could cut it in the Premier League, but after 12 goals in 24 games, he looked a €4.5m bargain.

A report in L’Equipe now suggests that Sam Allardyce, fresh from his Gallic success story, is looking into the possibility of bringing the twice capped Guadeloupe forward to the Boleyn Ground as well.

Capable of playing anywhere across the front-line, as an out-and-out striker or in a wide-man role, Beauvue has been one of the key reasons for Guingamp’s relative success this season.

The 26-year-old has contributed 21 goals to Jocelyn Gourvennec’s side’s season, a campaign that sees them sitting comfortably in a mid-table position in the top tier of French football, and preparing for a Coupe de France semi-final, after winning the competition in 2013-14.

But Guingamp’s respectable showing in the Europa League this season, having reached the knock-out stages, is rumoured to have alerted many clubs across the continent to the former Bastia man’s talents.

Fellow Premier League mid-tablers Everton are reported to be keen on bringing the attacker to England, while interest from Germany and Borussia Dortmund in particular is on the rise.

A product of the Nantes academy, Beauvue is a relative late bloomer at the top level, having not made his Ligue 1 debut for Bastia until he was just a month short of his 25th birthday.

That fact shouldn’t put anyone off the hitman though, with a certain Didier Drogba failing to make a Ligue 1 appearance until he was 23, ironically at Guingamp, and it didn’t seem to do him any harm.

Reaching the same highs as the Ivorian are probably a step too far for the latest West Ham target, but if he can prove a similar success to their last French-based import, few Irons fans will be complaining.

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Ben Stones

Ladbrokes News’ equine expert, Ben likes nothing more than studying the form to pick out a winner or two for our readers. A Journalism and Media Studies graduate from the University of Winchester, Ben has previously written for a number of football and racing blogs and websites, as well as contributing to the sports pages of his home-town newspaper.