LONDON – Christian Eriksen says he was made out to be “the bad guy” at Tottenham Hotspur because he spoke openly of his desire for a fresh challenge when his contract expired at the Premier League club.
The 27-year-old Dane, who joined Spurs in 2013 and moved to Inter Milan last month, had said after Tottenham’s defeat by Liverpool in last season’s Champions League final that he wanted to try something new.
“If you have a short contract, you’ll be the black sheep,” Eriksen told the BBC. “I was very honest… I didn’t want to hide like a lot of players do. Everyone’s different… I wanted to say it out loud.
“I did get the blame for a lot of stuff, for being the bad guy. I read I was the bad person in the changing room, that ever since I said I wanted to leave it was no good me being there.”
Eriksen, whose contract was due to expire in June, said he had worked to improve his form in the first part of the campaign in which Mauricio Pochettino was sacked as manager and replaced by Jose Mourinho.
“I was ready to try something new but felt if nothing came, I was still ready to play for my place,” Eriksen added.
“I was not a different player. But I was in and out of the team. However, even if I had a four-year contract, this season would have been difficult after the Champions League final.”