Patrick van Aanholt reacts to Sunderland relegation as Crystal Palace edge towards safety

van Aanholt left Sunderland in January
van Aanholt left Sunderland in January
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Former Sunderland left-back Patrick van Aanholt has expressed sympathy after his former side were relegated from the Premier League.

The Dutchman was reunited with Sam Allardyce in January in a deal worth £14 million, after a series of woeful displays towards the end of the calendar year.

Van Aanholt sparked controversy when he then said he had forced through a move from Wearside, also voicing his displeasure with David Moyes' training sessions and saying he had 'lost his love of the game'.

The 26-year-old briefly lost his place earlier in the season as Moyes became increasingly exasperated with his defending and positioning.

Moyes insisted it had been his decision alone to sell and tellingly hit back, saying he 'wouldn't want to reveal the real reasons' for selling.

Van Aanholt struck a far more conciliatory tone in an interview with the Crystal Palace official website after his side's defeat to Burnley.

"I am very sorry for Sunderland," he said.

"I spent two hand a half years there and they basically helped me into the Premier League, I am sad for them.

"But I am at Palace now and I have moved on - we still need another win to get to 41 points and be safe and I am very positive we will do that."

He has been virtually ever present since moving to the capital, scoring the winner in a crucial game against Middlesbrough in late February.