Gomez: ‘Gasperini tried to attack me, he never apologised’

by | Aug 18, 2021 09:53

Sevilla striker Papu Gomez said Atalanta coach Gian Piero Gasperini ‘tried to physically attack’ him and explained why he left the Orobici last season.

The former captain left La Dea after a falling out with Gasperini in November and was frozen out until he completed a move to Sevilla in the following transfer window.

The 33-year-old, who played 252 competitive games with Atalanta, admitted he refused Gasperini’s orders during the Champions League match between the Orobici and Midtjylland and the relationship then declined.

“I did something wrong,” Gomez told La Nacion. “I presume it was because I disobeyed the tactical changes in the Champions League match against Midtjylland.

“There were 10 minutes left in the first half and the coach asked me to move to the right, while I was doing very well at left. I said no.

“I imagine having responded like this, halfway through the match and in front of the cameras, it created the perfect situation for him to get angry.

“At that moment I realised that I was going to be replaced at half-time and so it happened. In the dressing room however, he overstepped the line and tried to physically attack me.

“Then I said enough. We can argue, OK, but physical aggression is intolerable. I asked for a meeting with President Antonio Percassi and I told him that I would have no problems moving forward.

“I realised I made a mistake, that as captain I had not behaved well and that I had been a bad example by disobeying the coach, but I also told him that I wanted an apology from Gasperini.

“The next day there was a meeting with the whole team. I apologised to the coach and my teammates for the incident, but I haven’t received any apologies.

“How was I supposed to understand this? Was I wrong and he did something right? It all started from there. After a few days, I told the President that I no longer wanted to work with Gasperini at Atalanta.

“He replied that he would not let me go and therefore a tug-of-was started which I paid for. I ended up outside of the squad.”

Gomez continued to recall the treatment from Atalanta and how the Bergamaschi ‘closed the doors to Italian football’ for the Argentina international.

“It was bad, after all I gave for the club,” Gomez continued. “They misbehaved. The President [Antonio Percassi] didn’t have the courage to ask the coach to apologise to me. So it all ended.

“But that’s not all, since they also closed the doors to Italian football for me. They didn’t want to give me to any big clubs because they said I would strengthen a rival.

“Thank God Sevilla arrived and allowed me to continue competing at a high level and to be able to aspire to the Copa America. That was my obsession.”

Gomez played twice, contributing two goals and one assist when Argentina went all the way in the Copa America 2021.

Gasperini replied to Gomez: ‘The physical attack came from him, not me’



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