Richarlison hits out at Conte as Tottenham suffer Champions League exit


Mueez Ajao

– Tottenham forward Richarlison has criticised manager Antonio Conte over his lack of playing time this season.

– The Brazil international, 25, joined Spurs from Everton in a £60m deal last summer but has since started just seven games in the Premier League.

– Richarlison, who has spent time sidelined through injuries, came on as a 70th-minute substitute as Spurs were knocked out of the Champions League by AC Milan on Wednesday.

Also Read: Milan battle through to Champions League quarterfinals

– “I should have played,” he said.

– Speaking to Brazilian TV station TNT Sports after Wednesday’s match, he added: “I was playing well, we won against Chelsea and West Ham and suddenly I was on the bench.

– “I played five minutes against Wolves, asked the reason and no-one told me why. Yesterday, they asked me to take a fitness test in the gym and told me I was going to start today if I passed it.

– “And today I was on the bench. There are things I can’t understand. There was no explanation again, let’s see what he [Conte] will tell us tomorrow – but I’m not silly, I’m a professional who works hard every day and I want to play.”

– Spurs exited the Champions League in the last 16 after Wednesday’s 0-0 draw saw Milan progress on aggregate.

– Richarlison’s playing time in the Premier League this season totals 661 minutes, with his only goals for the club coming against Marseille in the Champions League in September.

– “There hasn’t been enough minutes given to me. I don’t have enough minutes, was injured for a bit, but when I’m on the pitch I give my life,” he said.

– “I played well in two games, especially against Chelsea, so I think I should have played tonight, but I can’t go on crying about it now.”

– Spurs, who sit fourth in the Premier League, face Nottingham Forest on Saturday.

– “We have 12 games to play now and the focus is that,” Richarlison said.

– “I’ll try to score as many goals as I can because the club has paid a lot of money for me and I haven’t given enough back on the pitch yet.

– “Fair to say my injuries didn’t help and I haven’t had enough minutes. But now I’ll go home, rest, train tomorrow and see if he’ll put me in the first XI next game.”

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