West Ham United have added to their attacking ranks with the signing of speedy winger Sofiane Feghouli on a free transfer. The 40-cap Algeria international is out of contract at Valencia this summer and will officially arrive in East London on 1 July after agreeing terms on a three-year deal.
Feghouli, who represented France at U21 level, spent six years in La Liga after joining Los Che from Grenoble in 2010, making 243 appearances across all competitions. The 26-year-old also spent time on loan at Almeria earlier in his career and appeared at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, where he scored a penalty against Belgium and also featured in meetings with South Korea, Russia and eventual champions Germany as the Desert Foxes reached the knockout stages for the very first time.
"I am very happy to sign for the Hammers and for Slaven Bilic," Feghouli told West Ham's official website. "The history of the club is important for me in my decision. Playing in the Premier League is very important for players in their careers and I am happy to play for the Hammers."
Feghouli had previously attracted attention from Barcelona and Manchester United in addition to the likes of Chelsea, Arsenal and Fenerbahce. His exit from Valencia appeared to be sealed in April, when he was suspended and subjected to an internal disciplinary procedure after reportedly missing a training session. A late substitute's cameo against Sevilla in April proved to be his 31st and final outing of a difficult campaign at the Mestalla, which saw the six-time Spanish champions finish only six points above the relegation zone after Pako Ayestaran was eventually installed as manager following the resignation of Nuno Espirito Santo and Gary Neville's short-lived tenure.
Feghouli is the second senior signing completed by West Ham so far this summer, with former Gunners midfielder Havard Nordtveit also set to join in July after leaving Borussia Monchengladbach. Slaven Bilic is evidently eager to bolster his squad significantly ahead of the club's move to the Olympic Stadium and recently confirmed his interest in ex-Chelsea winger Gokhan Tore and Atiba Hutchinson, two players he worked with during his two-year stint in charge of newly crowned Turkish champions Besiktas.
"Yes I want Gokhan Tore and Atiba Hutchinson, they are targets," he said as reported by Sky Sports. "We also have others but they are major targets. Will it happen? Nobody can say yet but we want him.
"I want one transfer for both. More than one thing has to happen for this deal. When a club wants a player it depends on how much [Besiktas] want to sell a player and how much they are asking. There is a lot written in the Turkish press that is untrue. But I know them [Tore and Hutchinson], I spent two years with them."