Arouna Kone triggers new Everton deal

Arouna Kone triggered a contract extension by playing his 35th game for Everton
Image: Arouna Kone triggered a contract extension by playing his 35th game for Everton

Arouna Kone has triggered a 12-month extension to his Everton contract by playing in the 6-2 win against Sunderland.

The Ivorian striker took not only a new deal from the game but also the match ball after hitting a hat-trick in a superb win for the Toffees, who move to eighth in the Premier League as a result.

The goals treble Kone's tally for the club but the more vital statistic is the fact that they came in his 35th appearance for the club, a threshold which activates another year on the Goodison Park playing staff.

Everton manager Roberto Martinez was full of praise for hat-trick hero and the way he has battled back from injury to have an impact for the Merseysiders.

"His springboard was in the opening game of the season against Watford," said Martinez.

"He had awful luck with an injury which was career threatening at one point. It became very difficult and then in that season he never got the match fitness that he needed.

"I thought when he came on as a substitute against Watford he showed he could help the team and that he was himself it was an incredible turning point for him.

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"From that point on we've seen a very strong footballer."

Roberto Martinez says his Everton players were rewarded for their ruthless streak in the final third

Martinez added: "It was a really tough injury and I have seen players retiring from that. He got fit but then had a period of getting back to match fitness but no one at the training ground ever lost faith in him. He is a very important player for us."

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