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Sporting CP president feuds with players after loss to Atletico

Sergio Perez / Reuters / Action Images

Sporting Clube de Portugal president Bruno de Carvalho wasn't thrilled with his club's Europa League quarter-final loss to Atletico Madrid.

After watching his team fall behind 2-0 on aggregate following the first-leg defeat in Madrid, Carvalho publicly lashed out at his players on Facebook, chastising the defenders for lacking concentration, ripping forwards Gelson Martins and Fredy Montero for failing to convert their chances, and lambasting Fabio Coentrao and Bas Dost for their yellow cards and consequential suspensions for the reverse leg in Lisbon.

Members of the squad reportedly demanded an explanation from Carvalho on Friday morning for the social media outburst, but he didn't make an appearance at the training grounds, reports Rui Miguel Gomes and Bruno Fernandes from O Jogo. Carvalho's absence then persuaded several Sporting players, including Portugal internationals Rui Patricio, William Carvalho, and Coentrao, to take to Instagram in a show of solidarity and denounce their president's comments.

"On behalf of the SCP squad, through this joint statement we express our disgust with our president's public statements after yesterday's game for which we did not achieve the result we desired," the players' statement reads, as translated by theScore. "The lack of support at this moment from the one who is supposed to be our leader, pointing the finger to publicly blame an athlete's performance when a group is ruled by its combined effort."

The players' resistance didn't sit well with Carvalho, however, as he once again took to Facebook and threatened to suspend every player who posted the message.

"At Sporting, we don't live in a banana republic. Every player who wrote the attached text is immediately suspended and will have to face the discipline of the club," Carvalho's since-deleted statement reads, courtesy of SIC Noticias.

Nineteen Sporting players posted the message decrying Carvalho, SIC Noticias notes. As a result, Sporting will reportedly field their B team in Sunday's Liga Portuguesa clash with Pacos de Ferreira, an official team source told O Jogo.

Sporting hosts Atletico for the second leg of their quarter-final April 12.

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