Richarlison complained after Tottenham boss Antonio Conte decided to drop him

Richarlison might only have been a Tottenham player for a few months, but he has already made his feelings clear about manager Antonio Conte.

The Brazil international was one of a number of new arrivals in Conte’s first summer transfer window in charge, joining from Everton in a deal worth up to £60m. He scored twice on his Champions League debut to secure a win against Marseille, but hasn’t netted since amid injury and selection issues.

Richarlison was left out of the starting line-up for both legs of Spurs’ Champions League round of 16 clash with AC Milan, playing just 20 minutes of each game as Conte’s team went out without scoring. He pulled no punches after the elimination, aiming a string of complaints with comments which may well concern Conte amid a worrying run

“Yesterday [Tuesday], they asked me to take a test at the gym, that if I was good I would go to the game and, at the time of the game, they left me on the bench,” Richarlison told TNT Sports (via ESPN Brasil ). Conte’s demands for high levels of fitness from his squad have been well-documented, with his double sessions coming into focus at both Chelsea and Tottenham.

Players were pushed to the brink of exhaustion during Spurs’ pre-season tour of South Korea as Conte turned up the pressure. Some squad members were seen collapsing after the drills, which even took their toll on England captain Harry Kane.

“I didn’t understand… I was playing well, we won against Chelsea and West Ham and suddenly I was on the bench,” he said.

“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.

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“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 that works hard every day and I want to play.

“There hasn’t been enough minutes given to me, this season – and forgive my language – has been s***. I don’t have enough minutes, was injured for a bit, but when I’m on the pitch I give my life.

“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.”

The 25-year-old has played just 661 minutes in the Premier League, having started only seven times, and is yet to score.

He says he has not yet started paying back his hefty fee and will wait to see whether he will be given a chance against Nottingham Forest on Saturday.

“We have around 15 games to play now and the focus is that,” he 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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