Lamine Kone has admitted to the Chronicle that the language barrier is proving to be a problem at Sunderland.
Kone only moved to Wearside in January, and he is not yet fluent in English.
The centre-back claims that not being able to communicate with his teammates has been a struggle, but the likes of John O’Shea have helped him through his initial appearances.
“Obviously, language is a bit of a problem and I’m having to learn to communicate in English,” Kone said.
“But I’ve played alongside John O’Shea for the first couple of games, and he speaks a lot during the games, which is helpful, and there are French players here like Yann (M’Vila) and Younes Kaboul, who have helped me as well.”
Kone has already made a big impact at Sunderland, with his first two performances being hugely impressive.
The 27-year-old has been thrown in at the deep end - with his two appearances in English football coming against Liverpool and Manchester City - but he has coped admirably.
Kone seems to have added steel and power to Sunderland’s defence, and he is quickly becoming a fans’ favourite at the Stadium of Light.
The Ivory Coast international now seems likely to keep his place in Sam Allardyce’s defence, as the North East side prepare to face Manchester United on Saturday.