The Everton-linked defender has tried to force through a move.
Lamine Kone scores the second goal for Sunderland
Sunderland fans have taken to Twitter to share their anger at Lamine Kone’s plea to leave the club.
The 27-year old issued a statement late last night suggesting a dispute over his contract is the main factor behind his decision to leave, with the Sunderland Echo quoting the following:
“At the end of last season, I was told by the club that I would be offered a new contract,” said Kone.
Sunderland's Lamine Kone celebrates with team mates after scoring their first goal
“Following numerous phone conversations and face to face meetings, the latest of which took place today with David Moyes and Martin Bain, no contract has been forthcoming. It is therefore with much regret that I can only assume that I do not figure in David Moyes’ future plans.
“With that being the case, it is with much sadness that I have asked the manager and the chief executive to be allowed to leave Sunderland Football Club.”
The centre-back is thought to be close to a switch to Everton – as reported by the Daily Mail – and his decision to release such a forthright statement is a clear ploy to force Sunderland’s hands.
New manager Ronald Koeman during the press conference
Everton are keen to strengthen their defence after the sale of John Stones and have already added Ashley Williams to their ranks.
Kone could be next to join Ronald Koeman’s new-look squad and his statement has surely pushed him closer to an exit.
Sunderland's Lamine Kone in action with Watford's Troy Deeney
Despite pledging to remain professional while still at the club, Kone’s mentality will not be right, and Moyes will need to reshuffle his defensive pack for tomorrow’s game.
We’ve provided a selection of tweets on Kone’s statement from a disgruntled Sunderland fan base below:
The whole Kone statement to me reeks of agent talk. I doubt he'd feel that way after the last six months. But that said, resolve this issue.— Michael Bowers (@MichaelBowers15) August 11, 2016
Incredible, staggering statement by Lamine Kone. Would love to see #safc make him rot in reserves— Ross Gregory (@rossgregory9) August 11, 2016
@RokerReport before this statement was on Kone's side, not now. I'd sell him, but only for market value. He can wait 4 yrs till it's matched— Anderson (@AMarky12) August 11, 2016
I'm literally speechless over that Koné statement. Has his agent written all over it but he's obviously all for it himself— Markus Person (@Markus_Person) August 11, 2016
Lamine Kone showing his true colours. That statement is the biggest load of rubbish I've ever seen. Shambles from the club also.— David Nunn (@DavidNunn73) August 11, 2016
The statement is absolutely dreadful, but I'm glad Kone has released it. Now people can see the club aren't the ones at fault here.— Sean (@sozmarra) August 11, 2016