Tottenham: Ryan Mason unimpressed by Callum Wilson and Michail Antonio after Richarlison comments
Tottenham acting head coach Ryan Mason was unimpressed by Callum Wilson and Michail Antonio mocking the club’s record-signing Richarlison, and says he would never have done the same as a player.
Newcastle forward Wilson and West Ham’s Antonio shared a joke at Richarlison’s expense on a recent episode of The Footballer’s Football Podcast for his wild, shirtless celebration after scoring a last-gasp equaliser in the 4-3 defeat to Liverpool last month -- only for Diego Jota to restore Liverpool’s lead moments later.
The Brazilian cost Spurs £60million from Everton last summer but his stoppage-time header at Anfield was his first League goal for the club after seeing efforts chalked off for offside against Fulham in September and Nottingham Forest in March.
"He’s scored four times this season," Antonio said. ‘Three of the times he’s been offside [and] he’s taken his top off four times this season.
"He’s got four yellows – he’s almost on a suspension," Wilson added, before the pair dissolved into laughter.
Mason, who said Richarlison has struggled "for rhythm" this season but backed him to come good next term, said he did not like hearing the jibes from fellow professionals.
"Richy, I don’t think he’s thinking about other players," Mason said. "His own pride and his own determination will probably drive that most of all.
"Maybe he’s heard it, maybe’s seen it, maybe it will give him a little bit more. I’m not sure on that.
"As a coach I wouldn’t do it, and as a player I’d never have done it as well. I don’t really like that type of thing.
"We’re all trying to do our best, we’re all professionals, we’re working hard, we dedicate our lives to get to this level and to compete at this level.
"I don’t really like that type of thing, personally.
"From a player’s point of view, I’ve been signed for a club as a record signing so I know the feeling that you really want to give back.
"One thing I will say about Richy is he’s always come in and he’s had energy to try. He’s a fighter, he works hard, he trains hard.
"I’ve never seen someone that shirks responsibility. Yes of course we would have wanted more goals and he would have wanted more goals from himself."
Mason added: "He’s never really had any rhythm whatsoever. He has had quite a few injuries this year and has picked up a few on international duty.
"I’ve always felt like he’s been chasing his fitness. And there were moments early on in the season where he got a few disallowed goals, a few moments were hit the post and maybe those would have gone in then maybe it created a bit of momentum."
Spurs host Brentford on Saturday and finish the season at Leeds on May 28, with Mason hoping Richarlison can finish the season on a positive note.
He added: "But we’ve got two games and hopefully you can still impact the season and score some goals to help us finish the season in a good way. And then I’m sure come preseason, they’ll come back full of energy to really show us what it’s really all about.”