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Colback expects to be hated

ESPN staff
June 10, 2014 « Villa sign Cole on free transfer | Rashid's burst takes Yorkshire top »
Former Sunderland midfielder Jack Colback said joining Newcastle was a dream come true © Getty Images
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A war of words has broken out between Sunderland and Jack Colback after the midfielder's controversial move to arch-rivals Newcastle.

Colback crossed the Wear-Tyne divide to join the club he supported as a boy, rejecting a new contract from Sunderland, in a move the club said has "left a bitter a taste".

But speaking to the Sun, Colback said he does not care what the fans he has left behind think of him. "I'm sure I will be hated quite a lot there now," he said. "The derby at the Stadium of Light should be interesting.

"But it is not something I can dwell on and I am strong enough to deal with it. This is football and I couldn't allow myself to think about what fans were going to say and then miss this chance.

"A lot of people will give their own opinions - but I'm not going to be reading what people are saying online. To come and play here is a dream come true. Pulling the shirt on for the first time will be one of the proudest moments of my life."

Sunderland took the extraordinary step on Wednesday of releasing an official statement in which they accused Colback of leading them to believe he would stay on Wearside.

"Jack is a player we have nurtured and developed through our academy system since he was eight years old," the club said. "We gave him the opportunity to become a professional footballer and are therefore extremely disappointed in the events that have led to his departure from the club.

"This wasn't about money - the club agreed to all of the terms demanded of us during discussions and we were always led to believe that Jack wanted to stay with us. At his and his representatives' request, final talks were put on hold until the club secured its top flight status. To our dismay, however, we were subsequently never given the chance to negotiate with him to stay.

"For him to then leave the club that has supported him throughout his formative years in such a manner, with no chance for Sunderland to recover any of the significant investment that it has made in him as a player, has left a bitter taste."

Colback's take on his move may further antagonise Sunderland supporters, claiming he ias ready to show loyalty to Newcastle. "Hopefully it can go well and I will ideally be here for the rest of my career," he said. "I would love to leave here a legend."

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