Everton striker delivers verdict on deadline day destination – report
By Matt Farr
Everton outcast Arouna Kone wants to remain in the Premier League if he quits the club before Tuesday’s transfer deadline, according to a report.
The 33-year-old is no longer a part of Ronald Koeman’s long-term plans at Goodison Park, and has been made available for transfer.
Koeman has already triggered a mass mid-season clear out this month, allowing several of the club’s fringe players to leave for pastures new, and Kone is expected to be the next departure.
However, the Liverpool Echo understand that the Ivory Coast forward would prefer to stay in the Premier League, which is bad news for Queens Park Rangers.
It was reported that the Championship club had been keen on bringing him to Loftus Road this month, but their hopes may well have been dashed by Kone’s Premier League preference.
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It could though, alert the likes of Sunderland and Swansea to the situation, as they are both on the hunt for a new goalscorer.
Sunderland manager David Moyes may be particularly keen for a reunion, having already acquired a number of his former Everton players since taking over at the Stadium of Light, including Joleon Lescott, Darron Gibson and Steven Pienaar.
Ronald Koeman revealed to the Echo on Monday that he had received several offers for the player, but no deal has yet come to light as the winter window approaches its cut-off point.
Football Insider verdict
For the sake of finishing his career on a high, Kone needs to leave Everton as soon as possible. The 33-year-old cannot provide the same qualities that premier goalscorer Romelu Lukaku can for the first-team, while Enner Valencia is the preferred backup-choice for Koeman. Therefore, barring an injury crisis, Kone will not be getting a chance any time soon; perhaps even then, he might opt for someone like Kevin Mirallas to lead the line. There are much better players at Everton’s disposal, and leaving the club is the best solution for both parties. However, there may not be many Premier League sides interested in him this month, and ruling out a move to the Championship could limit his options.
In other Everton transfer news, Seamus Coleman has responded to speculation linking him with a move away from Everton.