Former Tottenham Hotspur defensive midfielder Victor Wanyama has opened up about his departure from Tottenham and his frustrations over playing time and injuries.
Wanyama’s revelation comes a month after he completed a surprising move to the Major League Soccer (MLS) side Montreal Impact -managed by Arsenal legend Thierry Henry.
The 28 year-old is currently in isolation, along with the rest of his new MLS teammates who are working out from the confines of their homes after MSL suspended the league and ordered for the closure of all training facilities.
In an interview with the CBC, Wanyama says his playing time suffered due to forces above Jose Mourinho in the club’s hierarchy, which seemed bent on keeping him off of Spurs’ pitch while they looked for someone to buy him.
“The first thing [Mourinho] told me, he was wondering why I wasn’t playing. I have to be playing. The problem wasn’t with the coach if you ask me. The problem was a little bit upstairs and they didn’t give me a chance,” he said.
He further added that the issues with Spurs’ upper management started back in 2017 when he suffered a knee cartilage injury during a pre-season and missed the first half of the season.
He was never the same player again after the injury which further pushed him down the Spurs’ midfield pecking order.
“I was not given the chance to come back,” Wanyama said.
”They tried to frustrate me. They gave me one game after four months, or three months, so it was a little bit tough.”
”I was frustrated. I wanted to get my happiness back, my football happiness back. That’s when the manager here, Thierry [Henry] called me and asked if I wanted to play. And I said yes.”
Wanyama joined the Saints in 2013 from Celtic and spent three years at Southampton before he left for Tottenham Hotspur in a Sh1.1 billion deal in 2016.
He became the first-ever Kenyan player to score in the UEFA Champions League when he scored the first goal in Celtic’s 2–1 win over Barcelona on 7 November 2012.
The Kenyan talisman has earned over 50 caps for Harambee Stars since making his international debut in May 2007 at the age of 15.