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Sessègnon set for Seagulls? Brighton eye former Sunderland favourite

Reports in France suggest for Sunderland favourite Stéphane Sessègnon is being eyed by newly-promoted Brighton.

Tottenham Hotspur v Sunderland - Barclays Asia Trophy: Semi Final Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

According to reports in France, former Sunderland midfielder Stéphane Sessègnon is wanted by a club newly promoted to the Premier League.

And after last week’s Newcastle signing of ex-Black Cat Javier Manquillo, you could be forgiven for pondering whether Rafa Benitez is continuing the theme by moving for the Benin playmaker who featured in red-and-white during four Premier League seasons.

But no, the club freshly arrived in England’s top division rumoured to be chasing Sessègnon is said to be Brighton and Hove Albion.

Now aged 33, Sessègnon has made 27 appearances for Montpellier since departing English shores in the summer of 2016 when he left West Brom.

The player, who has 65 caps for his native Benin, was with the Baggies for three campaigns after seemingly falling out with then-Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio.

Sessègnon made over 90 appearances for the Black Cats in a spell spanning two-and-a-half-years. Playing under three different managers he scored eighteen goals.

At times deemed 'inconsistent', the 5ft 6in player was one of the more talented footballers to have appeared at the Stadium of Light in recent years. A selection of highlights included some virtuoso performances and a smattering of stunning goals before time was called on his Wearside career by a brush with the law and falling foul of disciplinarian Di Canio.

Sunderland v Everton - Premier League
Di Canio and Sessègnon in 2013
Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

Sessègnon was arrested for drink driving whilst his teammates were playing a Capital One Cup game against MK Dons in August 2013. The axe from the first team followed and the player would be sold to West Bromwich Albion on transfer deadline day that summer.

For Tony Pulis' Baggies, Sessègnon made a further 79 appearances in English football before being released from the Hawthorns at the same time as another ex-Sunderland man, Victor Anichebe.

Sessègnon raised a few eyebrows on Wearside earlier this year when he declared that he should have signed for a ‘better club’ than Sunderland when he left Paris St Germain in 2011 and opted for Steve Bruce’s side.

The midfielder who was signed for West Brom from Sunderland for a then-Baggies record fee of £5.5m has been talking up his prospects of departing Montpellier since the French season ended. Sessègnon has continued to suggest he could see himself returning across the Channel and is also said to have admirers in China.