Ex-City striker wanted wages 'four times higher' to remain at Kilmarnock
- Credit: PA
Former Norwich City striker Kyle Lafferty is engaged in a bitter and public war of words with Kilmarnock after leaving the club following their relegation.
The Northern Irishman has accused his former club of not engaging in talks to keep him at the club whilst Kilmarnock have released a statement claiming Lafferty wanted to quadruple his wages.
Kilmarnock were relegated to the Scottish Championship after a two-legged play-off defeat to Dundee, with Lafferty scoring a penalty in the second leg. The ex-City man scored 13 goals in 13 appearances across the league and Scottish Cup after arriving in February.
He has accused his former employers of being 'disingenuous' and claimed players were only given 'hours' to decide on contract offers.
In an interview with the Daily Record, Lafferty said: “I was with the Northern Ireland squad in Ukraine when I read that I’d decided to move on from Kilmarnock, it was extremely disappointing. It just isn’t true that I’ve walked away, the opposite is true. I loved the time I had there and wanted to stay.
“My aim was to be a part of the bid to bounce straight back to the Premiership next season but the club have announced that won’t be happening. The club spoke to my agent, he told them what I was looking for and I wasn’t asking for the earth or to give the boss Tommy Wright a heart attack.
“Contract talks are all about negotiation but there was none of that, we heard nothing, just an announcement on the official club website that I and several other players had decided to move on.
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“It’s a disingenuous statement, the fans deserve to know what the situation is as it’s not right to have players thrown under the bus because of the relegation."
Killie have hit back at Lafferty's accusations in an official statement, describing them as 'untrue' and 'disappointing.
"We received a series of figures from his representatives which were four times higher than the sum he received towards the end of the 2020/21 campaign.
"At this point, we informed Kyle and his representatives that there was no possibility of agreeing to those terms, which would have had a monumental impact on the allocated first team budget for the season.
"While disappointed to read Kyle’s remarks, we reiterate our thanks to him for his contribution to the club and wish him well for the future."