Sporting goalkeeper Rui Patricio has sensationally sought to quit the troubled Portuguese club , with a man being heavily linked with Premier League new boys Wolves posting a 34-page letter of resignation .
Within that, the 30-year-old has accused president Bruno de Carvalho of inciting anger among supporters and turning them against the players.
In May fans attacked a number of squad members and coaches during a training session while 19 players were suspended by Carvalho following a defeat to Atletico Madrid in the first leg of a Europa League quarter-final.
Patricio believes these events entitle him to termination pay after being "the target of psychological and physical violence, which constitutes just cause for me to be free of the contract with Sporting Clube de Portugal".
Several other players are also reported to be seeking ways out of Estadio Jose Alverde amid the chaos which has engulfed the club.
Outspoken De Carvalho has, however, blamed outside interference for the turmoil within the Sporting camp, with so-called ‘super agent’ Jorge Mendes accused of “blackmail” as he endeavours to push through a move for Wolves and Napoli target Patricio.
De Carvalho told the Portuguese media: "I want to tell you that Sporting were negotiating with Jorge Mendes, who said that there was a proposal from Napoli, but in the meantime the change of coach at the club [Carlo Ancelotti replacing Maurizio Sarri] ended up cooling that interest, then appeared Wolves.
"Jorge Mendes' right-hand man called us at 11 at night and asked what was Sporting's position. Of the €18m, Jorge Mendes wanted €7m and we said no. Jorge Mendes wanted to take advantage of the situation, which is a crime.
"When we did the renewals of Adrien [Silva] and Rui, we finished the old contracts and made new ones, the old ones, made by Godinho Lopes, said that both the player and Jorge Mendes had a percentage of the registration. With the new contracts, the percentages of the company Gestifute are annulled.
"Gestifute told us that they wanted €3m from Rui Patricio's business and another €4m from Adrien or we had no business."
A statement released on the official website of agency Gestifute, Mendes' company, hit back at the Sporting president and denied the allegations levelled against them.
"At the press conference held today, regarding the termination of the contract with just cause by player Rui Patricio, the president of Sporting SP accused Gestifute of "blackmail" ('pay us more than €7m or no deal')," the firm said in a lengthy rebuttal. "Nothing is further from the truth.
"Sporting, through executive director Dr Guilherme Pinheiro and its internal lawyer, on May 23, strongly urged Gestifute to try to get a proposal for the transfer of player Rui Patricio, in order to avoid pending his request to intervene, to resolve the dispute with Gestifute concerning player Adrien Silva, without prejudice to the payment of the consideration due to Gestifute, already contractualised by the transfer of player Rui Patricio himself.
"This dispute is related to the intervention of Gestifute in the renewal of the contract of the player Adrien Silva, which also took place at the request of Sporting in 2012, in a situation in which the same Sporting ran the risk of the player being free similarity, incidentally, of what happened at the same time as Rui Patricio himself.
"In return for those services, Gestifute did not immediately charge any amount and its remuneration depended on a future transfer consisting of a percentage of the respective price, which was not duly paid when transferring Adrien Silva to Leicester.
"Nothing in this process - strictly nothing - came about on the initiative of Gestifute."
Gestifute went on to accuse Sporting of raising the price demanded for Patricio after the player held a medical with Wolves - who have signed a number of Mendes' clients, including manager Nuno Espirito Santo and star midfielder Ruben Neves .
"Gestifute did everything to get the agreement of an English club for the transfer of player Rui Patricio for the €18m euros intended by Sporting, and even the player, satisfied with this possibility, performed medical tests, with authorisation of Sporting," the agency continued. "All this, once again, with the knowledge and express agreement of the president of Sporting.
"Surprisingly, the deal would end up failing late afternoon when Sporting executive manager Dr Guilherme Pinheiro, visibly embarrassed, told Gestifute that the president of Sporting finally demanded an increase in the price of €2m: "two million more or no business" - which was immediately rejected by the buying club. In two words: the business did not fail by any blackmail from Gestifute; the business failed due to an unanticipated and last-minute additional requirement to the already perfectly defined and agreed conditions.
"All of these facts may be confirmed by the said executive director, Dr Guilherme Pinheiro, and an internal lawyer, assuming that his obligation not to be absent from the truth does not overlap with any other dislocated duty of loyalty to those who definitely do not deserve it."
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