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Postecoglou proud of Richarlison for going public with mental health problems

Postecoglou proud of Richarlison for going public with mental health problems

Sports

"Strip it all back, they're all just human beings," says Postecoglou

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London (AFP) – Tottenham boss Ange Postecoglou has praised Richarlison for going public with his mental health issues.

The full extent of the Brazilian international's problems became clear earlier this week following an interview with ESPN where he broke down in tears.

The former Everton forward explained how he had been in a state of "depression" after a 2022 World Cup where his country were beaten in the quarter-finals and "wanted to give up".

Postecoglou, speaking ahead of Spurs' Premier League game at home to Luton on Saturday, was full of admiration for Richarlison's readiness to share the details of his condition in a bid to help other people.

"Strip it all back, they're all just human beings," said Postecoglou.

"I haven't spoken to Richy but Richy's really benefited from the support that does exist. Not just for him but for others in the community. Because he's benefitted so directly, he's taken on the responsibility of trying to share that around.

"It always makes more of an impact when it's somebody who is high profile, who's in a position where we think they shouldn't really have any problems or we see it as a sign of weakness when they're looking for help and support. It's a credit to him."

The Australian added: "He could have dealt with this privately obviously, but I think the public aspect of it, it's a brave decision for him, but more importantly it's hopefully a great conduit for others to reach out and seek help when it's required.

"It's a credit to Richy that he's sought help, he's got help, the right help and now he wants others to also benefit from it."

Meanwhile, Postecoglou said Spurs could block any move by World Cup-winner Cristian Romero to represent Argentina at the Olympic football tournament, which runs from July 24-August 10, after the 25-year-old expressed his desire to feature at the Paris Games during the recent international break.

But that would be an issue for north London side Spurs, given they will be duty bound to release Romero for the post-season Copa America and with the 2024/25 Premier League campaign starting on August 17.

"Olympics is a little bit of a different issue because club's aren't obliged to let players go to the Olympics," said Postecoglou.

"From that perspective, we have a little bit more of a say in it than other internationals. Certainly from our behalf as a club, we'll always be looking at making sure there is a balance there.

"He hasn't spoken to me about it, no one has spoken to me about it, but I guess pretty strong advice would be with the Copa America at the same time and hopefully us gearing up for a big season next year, I'd be suggesting rest is a better policy."