Coyle resigned to losing Kone

Arouna Kone in action at Arsenal
Arouna Kone in action at Arsenal

OWEN Coyle admitted Wigan Athletic would probably be resigned to losing Arouna Kone if the buyout clause in his contract is met.

The Ivorian scored 13 goals for Latics last season but has reportedly said that he does not want to compete outside the top level as preparations for Wigan’s Championship campaign begin.

And if Kone’s buyout clause – thought to be £5m – is met, Coyle is prepared to assess the situation from the player’s point of view.

“Kone is a terrific player and I think the whole world is aware he has a clause in his contract,” Coyle told the Evening Post.

“If that’s met it would probably mean business would have to be done.

“But there has been nothing yet which has triggered that so we will have to wait and see what the news on that will be.”

A number of clubs including Everton, Norwich and Hull are reportedly interested in securing the former PSV Eindhoven striker.

But the Wigan boss was keen to assure fans any money made on his sale would be spent on players.

“I don’t know what he’s been asked or if he’s been misquoted but the bottom line is I can understand that any player feels that they want to play at the highest level possible,” said Coyle.

“If that is to happen I know through my chat with the chairman and the chief executive that money would be reinvested in the squad and on a footballing front.

“So that’s where we are. Arouna Kone is a terrific player, there is no doubt with that but what is equally important is that fans of Wigan Athletic know that what we need next are players that want to be at Wigan Athletic. Those are the type of players we need to drive us up the league and back to the Premier League.”

Coyle also wants to ensure his players want to be at the club.

“If your heart’s not in it then you won’t be the same player so what I want next year is a squad that is focused, committed and they want to be here for the right reasons,” he added.

“But I think as well players have to realise they have all played their part in the fact Wigan Athletic are in this Championship.”