Troy Deeney did little to calm any fears that he may look to follow head coach Quique Sanchez Flores out of the door by describing the decision to part company with the Spaniard as “crazy”.
Deeney and Sanchez Flores have developed a close bond this season and they regularly walk round the pitch at full-time arm in arm. In fact, they were involved in a lengthy discussion at both Old Trafford and Anfield after Sanchez Flores sensed his captain was hugely frustrated at the work ethic of some of his teammates.
Deeney has become a more rounded player under Sanchez Flores, learning to play a more withdrawn role and chipping in with seven assists for Odion Ighalo as well as 15 goals. Although Deeney is likely to have been privy to advanced news on the future of the head coach, it still left him saddened.
“His time here has been a success,” Deeney said after yesterday’s game. “He’s brought me on a lot as a player. I have nothing but gratitude. We’ve had 16 new players and he’s made it seem effortless. Sunderland have been in the bottom three and managed to stay up, and Sam Allardyce is being hailed as a great manager, which he is, for keeping them up. But we’ve seemingly coasted through this season and our gaffer’s been sacked. It’s one of those crazy ones.”