Arouna Kone see’s the forthcoming season as an opportunity for him to prove his worth as a Everton player.
Kone joined Everton for £6m from Wigan in the summer, following Latics manager Roberto Martinez to Goodison Park.
But the striker has been unable to feature in his managers plans since sustaining a knee injury during his side’s 2-1 win over Hull on 19 October.
Speaking to evertontv, a Arouna Kone spoke of continuing his rehab over the summer ahead of the challenge to prove himself at Everton.
“The season coming for me is almost like where I have to prove my worth as a player and I accept that challenge and I’m ready to take that challenge on. It’s going to mean an awful lot when I do put that shirt back on and I’ll be doing my absolute level best to make sure that it’s a success”
“The most important thing is for me to be in the best possible shape I can be for the start of next season.
“That is why I am not going on holiday, I am staying in Europe to work hard over the summer period, so I can hit the ground running when pre-season starts in July.
“I spent the first three months of my rehab in Belgium and the manager (Roberto Martinez) was in constant contact.
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“His advice and the confidence he has shown me has really helped me through this period.
“The plan is to go back to Belgium, to the rehab centre where I have been working, then I will come back to Finch Farm for a fitness check. Then I will go back to Belgium but I will be back before the rest of the team to start pre-season.”
As a team Everton have had a fantastic season which gives me a huge motivation to prepare for next season.
“On a personal side, it has not gone as I’d hoped. I look back with a bit of pain. I have not played as many games as I would have liked due to this injury. It is something I never thought would have happened.
“It is painful to sit in the stands and watch. I would often say to myself that the style of play I was watching would suit me down to the ground.”