Earlier this season, Sunderland finally managed to get Papy Djilobodji and Didier Ndong out of the club. In mid-September, Djilobodji was sacked for breaching his contract and “comprehensively” failing a fitness test, the club’s website announced.
The following month, Sunderland parted ways with Ndong. The club’s official website confirmed his exit ‘on amicable terms’ and revealed that Sunderland would be owed compensation by his next club.
Both Djilobodji and Ndong were high-earners and serial under-performers who were part of the rotten core that saw Sunderland drop two divisions in two seasons.
Since leaving the Stadium of Light, both players have been given a fresh chance elsewhere as they return to France. Guingamp, who are in deep relegation trouble, took a punt of the ex-Sunderland pair.
And in an interview with French media outlet Ouest France, Guingamp manager Jocelyn Gourvennec explained his reasoning behind the decision.
As translated by Sport Witness, Gourvennec said: “It’s true that Papy hadn’t played for six months, and a year for Didier, but on the information we had, after meetings with them, regarding their state of mind, we had guarantees.
“After that, you know, the winter market is very complicated. Players who are doing well, on a run of form, don’t change clubs, and you can only be on the lookout for players wanting to relaunch themselves, or loans.”
Ndong has settled in since his move with nine appearances under his belt, but Djilobodji has had less success. The Senegal defender broke an opposition player’s nose in one of his early games and served a six-match ban.
Guingamp are currently 18th – which is a relegation play-off spot – and lie seven points adrift of safety, while just one point separates them from the outright relegation zone.