Lamine Kone finally left Sunderland this weekend, sealing a permanent move to Strasbourg where he’s been plying his trade on loan.
The 30-year-old is one of the relics of the Black Cats’ past, a top-flight signing who showed promise early on, but not hunger and desire when the going got tough.
He joins the French side for an ‘undisclosed’ fee, but it’s unlikely to be anywhere near the £17m Everton were thought to be willing to pay as recently as 2016. Instead, Jack Ross will be given the crumbs from a meagre transfer instead of the riches the club could have had a little under three years ago.
Signed from French club Lorient for £7m, Kone initially looked to be a composed and commanding centre back, but like many of the Black Cats’ imports, he was nowhere to be seen as they tumbled out of the top flight.
His Sunderland career totalled 72 outings and three goals, with 24 of those coming in the Championship as the club were relegated.
They’re facing a second season in the third-tier, a huge failure on their part given the resources available last season, but few will lament the departure of Kone, as you’ll see below.
Always will be one of my favourites just from the big Sam season good luck to him
— Charlie Pele Hodgson (@chodgson2002) June 1, 2019
Let's all do the conga
— Mark mcloughlin. (@Markmcl59158361) June 1, 2019
Bye bye bottler and don’t come back
— Header Safc (@HeaderSafc) June 1, 2019
— Steven James (@Stiffy3883) June 1, 2019
— Joe Roberts (@robertsjoe166) June 1, 2019
Make sure the door doesn't hit you on the way out
— Daniel Jenks (@DanielJenks89) June 1, 2019
Doesn't want to play for the lads so GOOD RIDDANCE ?
Sunderland til I die
— Don (@DonJenner) June 2, 2019