The call, according to multiple sources briefed by players who took part, included nine or 10 players and was led by the two highest-paid members of the team: Italians Lorenzo Insigne
and Federico Bernardeschi
, the latter of whom told reporters on Saturday night after the loss that, “I think maybe we need to change something.”
Monday’s conversation directly concerned the type of change the former Italian national team winger was seeking: the ouster of head coach and sporting director Bob Bradley.
The behind-the-scenes bickering continued on Tuesday as players and coaches returned to Toronto’s training facility, according to multiple sources present. There, Bradley met with the team’s leadership committee, which includes his son and TFC captain Michael Bradley
, Sean Johnson
, Insigne, Matt Hedges
, Jonathan Osorio
, Mark-Anthony Kaye
and Richie Laryea
, about how to address Bernardeschi’s comments. After that meeting, the full team convened. There, Bob Bradley confronted Bernardeschi about his quotes from Saturday night. Bernardeschi initially said he had nothing else to add, but when challenged further, the Italian traded barbs about team issues and tactics with both Bradleys and Kaye. Eventually, the meeting dispersed and the team went forward with its preparation for Saturday’s game against D.C. United.