Sean Dyche has addressed Demarai Gray’s statement on Instagram this week.
Speaking to evertontv, the Toffees boss said he wanted to be open with fans and admitted it was ‘interesting to hear’ Gray’s thoughts on the situation.
The winger looked set to end his two-year spell at Goodison Park this summer as he was linked with moves to Saudi Arabia, Fulham and Crystal Palace.
Everton were preparing to earn around £10 million for Gray’s exit, with the Jamaica international left out of each match-day squad this season.
However, the Toffees performed a dramatic U-turn when they decided to block his move in the final days of the transfer window, leaving Gray very frustrated.
While Everton were eager to bring Gray back into the team, the 27-year-old had other ideas and took to Instagram to criticise the club.
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He wrote: “Everton fans have always been great with me but it’s so difficult to play for someone who doesn’t show you respect as a person.”
Sean Dyche says Everton comes before Demarai Gray
It wasn’t long before Dyche was given the opportunity to explain Gray’s situation to the fans as he participated in an exclusive interview with evertontv.
Dyche said: “It’s an unfortunate one because I try to keep our business in-house. I think on this occasion, it’s right to reply.
“Demarai made it clear that he felt he was getting a move [away from Everton] and he told us a move was done, which was interesting to hear from a player. We reminded him of the truth of the fact that no moves are done without this club’s say so. That’s the truth of it.
“We look after these players; we look at all the different ways of looking after them. Mental and wellbeing is big, the tactics and technical, the physical. We look at all of that for all these players and we look after them.
“When it comes to a time like that then you go, ‘Well, hang on a minute. You made it clear you didn’t want to train, you didn’t want to be here, and you also said there was a move that was a done deal’.
“We said it’s not a done deal because this club is the most important. This club will make decisions on the future of you as players and not the other way around. I think it’s right to let our fans know that’s the truth.”
While Dyche was adamant that Demarai Gray would stay on Merseyside if it was right for the club, it now looks like the attacker is getting his move away anyway.
Ben Jacobs has reported that Gray is closing in on his Everton exit in a £8 million deal, with the former Leicester City man potentially sealing the switch today.