Wesley Sneijder and Diego Milito have both come to the defence of Frank de Boer, saying their former club Inter Milan were wrong to dismiss the Dutchman.
De Boer was relieved of his duties as Inter coach earlier this month after just 85 days in the role, having lost seven of his 14 games in charge.
Ex-Inter man Sneijder, however, feels De Boer, who won four Eredivisie titles as coach of Ajax, should have been given longer to prove himself.
"De Boer needed more time," Galatasaray midfielder Sneijder told Gazzetta dello Sport. "Frank did good work at Ajax and he did a really good job as assistant coach with the [Dutch] national team. He helped us a lot in the 2010 World Cup [when Netherlands reached the final].
"The truth is Inter ended with [former president Massimo] Moratti. I am really sad that he left. It's all over now. They need a leader. Someone respected. Where are the Chinese [owners]? I'm sure the players have never met them."
Sneijder believes De Boer was not treated fairly during his time at Inter and was pressurised into selecting summer signing Gabriel "Gabigol" Barbosa.
"He [De Boer] did not pick the team," he said. "If he would have known that every day they asked him to pick Gabigol because they paid €40 million for him, then maybe he would not have accepted the job."
Milito, Sneijder's former teammate at Inter, also feels De Boer should have been given more time at the San Siro.
"I liked him," Milito told Gazzetta dello Sport. "I think to sack him has been a mistake. He had winning ideas and could give a new mentality to both the team and club.
"He just needed more time to work. Without good results the coach is [always] the one to pay. But now the players have to take responsibility."
Stefano Pioli was appointed by Inter to succeed De Boer, with his first game in charge of the club against rivals AC Milan on Sunday.