Sunderland's newly installed majority stakeholder Stewart Donald today revealed on social media that the club has ceased paying wantaway player Papy Djilobodji after the Kaolack-born defender failed to return for club duties following the summer break.
Responding to a question on Twitter, ex-Oxford owner Donald stated that the Senegalese international, signed from Chelsea for a whopping £8 million, had indeed "requested not to come back," also adding that "we are not paying his wages."
The news will be welcomed on Wearside with reports suggesting the exiled former Nantes man netted a scandalous £142,000 a month whilst on loan to Ligue 1 outfit Dijon last season, of which £89,000 is rumoured to have come directly from the Stadium of Light's depleted coffers.
Djilobodji signed for Sunderland on a four-year deal in August 2016, making his Premier League debut under David Moyes in a 2–1 home loss to local rivals Middlesbrough – the Sunderland Echo mentioning his performance as a "rare positive."
However, as Sunderland struggled to retain their Premier League status, Djilobodji's performances and general discipline declined.
After being sent off against Hull City at the Stadium of Light he was charged with violent conduct by The FA in January 2017 after catching West Bromwich Albion's Darren Fletcher in the face, subsequently receiving a four-match ban.
Djilobodji returned to France's top flight following his parent club's relegation to the Championship, signing for the Mustards on a season-long loan.
On the downward slope
Following Sunderland's subsequent drop into League One, long-time owner Ellis Short departed the club last May.
Since then, Sunderland's new supremo, Stewart Donald, alongside business partner Charlie Methven, has axed high earners John O'Shea, Jack Rodwell, Whabi Khazri and Paddy McNair in an attempt to trim the club's over-inflated wage bill and prepare for life in the third tier of English football.
Djilobodji's Harry Houdini impression coupled with a desire to economise, streamline and improve the club's finances means that Papy is unlikely to remain a Sunderland player for much longer.
Incredibly, during a sit-down interview with French football outlet 20minutes.fr last April, Papy suggested that he still harboured hopes of one day playing for Real Madrid...
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