Tottenham winger Dejan Kulusevski expressed sadness over the firing of Antonio Conte by the club but asserted that the Spurs players endorsed the decision to dismiss him from his position.
On Sunday, Conte and Spurs separated after a week of intense speculation that had suggested he had already overseen his final game in charge.
Last Saturday, the Italian garnered headlines by going on a remarkable rant in his post-match press conference after Spurs squandered a two-goal lead to draw 3-3 at Southampton.
He labeled his players as “selfish” and astonishingly proposed that the club’s lack of tangible success in recent years had been ingrained, stating: “Tottenham’s story is this – 20 years and they never won something. Why?”
Conte’s controversial interview led to his dismissal
Club chiefs reportedly asked Conte to clarify those comments, and he was said to have insisted that they were aimed at the players rather than the hierarchy. However, it seems that this was not enough to save his job.
Media reports have highlighted apparent frustrations with Conte from the squad since his exit was confirmed, although Kulusevski, who was signed during the former Inter boss’ tenure, appeared disappointed.
Kulusevski said: “It’s always sad when a person you work with and have grown close to has to leave.
“But life goes on and you just have to move on. We have ten games left now and we have to do our best to reach the top four.”
“He has been very important [to me]. I have learned a lot from him and I will always remember him, but now we have his assistant [Cristian Stellini], who I know very well.
He added: “Then we’ll see who comes in next season, but I enjoy the city and the club very much.”
“It’s not me who decides. Whoever is the coach, we players will always accept and play for him and for everyone else.
“Now the club made this decision because they think it is the best, and we players stand behind that.”