Zenden may leave Sunderland

Bolo Zenden
Bolo Zenden
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FRUSTRATED Bolo Zenden may reject the chance to stay at Sunderland if his first-team opportunities remain limited over the final eight games of the season.

The club captain has been left disillusioned by a lack of action during the Black Cats’ six-game winless run – playing just 12 minutes since January’s victory at Blackpool.

Sunderland hope to keep Zenden at the club beyond the summer by offering the 34-year-old a third one-year deal at the Stadium of Light.

But the Dutchman will walk away when his contract expires if he remains on the fringes, with the former Barcelona wideman not ready to hang up his boots and move into coaching yet.

Zenden said: “There hasn’t been a chat yet (about a new contract). The situation hasn’t changed.

“In the last six games, I believe I’ve had about 10 minutes. You can understand where I am at the moment.

“It’s certainly something I will take into consideration.

“I’m obviously not happy with the minutes I’ve had, but that doesn’t mean we have to jump to conclusions.

“There’s still loads to come. That could definitely be at Sunderland, but it could definitely be somewhere else.

“Maybe because of the situation I’m in (he is not planning a move into coaching) is something other people will start speculating about, but I’m not ready for it.

“I’m not going to be pushed into certain situations when I’m not ready for it. But it might put question marks over what I want.”

Zenden was an influential figure the last time Sunderland tasted victory – at Blackpool on January 22.

But a blow to the knee ruled him out of the subsequent game against Chelsea while a calf strain prevented him appearing at Arsenal earlier this month.

Zenden has been fit for Sunderland’s other games though and boss Steve Bruce concedes he should have played the Dutchman more – a confession which is small comfort to the Black Cats skipper.

“It’s not like I’ve not been fit for six months,” added Zenden, who has started just seven Premier League games all season.

“What’s going to happen at the weekend, I don’t know. But there’s certain questions you’re better off asking the manager.

“It’s a positive thing that someone admits a mistake, but it doesn’t give me back the games that have passed.

“Potentially the home game against Liverpool could have been my last against my former team, which I didn’t feature in. That’s not going to come back.

“The manager commented I was still fit enough to play in the Premier League.

“The other side is I haven’t had many minutes. I have to put those things on the scale.

“The first half of the season, the situation was different and I played a lot of games, but after January it changed.”