Charles Leclerc breaks silence on rumoured Mattia Binotto sacking

Alfa Romeo team principal Frederic Vasseur is the favourite to replace Mattia Binotto, should the Ferrari boss be sacked.

Ferrari’s star driver Charles Leclerc has seemingly jumped to the defence of the Italian side and team principal Mattia Binotto, whose job has been a massive talking point ahead of the season finale.

This weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix will pull the curtain on the 2022 season, one which Ferrari will have mixed memories of.

The Maranello-based side will remember their dominant start to the year, where Leclerc claimed two wins from the opening three races, but also all the mistakes which followed.

In all honesty, the side’s 2022 downfall began at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, where Carlos Sainz retired after being hit and Leclerc lost a podium finish following a driver error.

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Ferrari have endured problems at more races this season than they’ve had completely clean weekends, highlighting why they’ve slipped so far behind Red Bull in the Constructors’.

Reliability problems with their power unit, countless strategic blunders, and driver errors have somewhat ridiculed the Italians season, which could’ve been so much better.

Unsurprisingly, it’s Binotto who has faced the brunt of the criticism, yet the Italian has remained adamant that nothing needs to change.

It appears that Ferrari president John Elkann believes that it’s Binotto who needs to be changed, following reports that he is set for the sack.

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Ferrari have denied the reports, with Leclerc having hit out at the media ahead of this weekend for making such a “big statement”.

“It’s a big statement that was made by the media, but again they remain rumours,” Leclerc said ahead of the season finale.

“But also for the team in itself, it’s not great to read these things. So I think it’s good that the team has cleared the air, and hopefully we can focus 100 per cent on this last weekend.”

Leclerc went on to discuss his opinion that the side are improving, something which is undoubtable considering they weren’t even a frontrunner last season.

Despite this, the Scuderia have lost multiple victories through their own doing, something which can be the difference in millions of dollars come the end of the year.

Leclerc doesn’t wasn’t want “too much attention” to be given to the rumours regarding Binotto, with the 24-year-old wanting the Italians to end the year “on a high” by claiming second in both championships.

“I think stability is paying off,” added Leclerc.

“We’ve been showing in the last few years that we are improving. There’s another step that we need to do, but we are working on that and I’m sure we’ll achieve that.

“There are always rumours around F1 and especially around Ferrari, and this doesn’t change. Obviously, when we are getting to the end of the season there are always voices around us.

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“But I think as a team we really need to focus on our job on track, try to extract all of the things that are happening around the team.

“People tend to forget how big of a step we’ve done from last year to this year. There is definitely another step that we need to do, but I’m sure we will do it all together, starting with this race hopefully to finish on a high this season.

“Apart from that there’s nothing more to say, I don’t think we should give too much attention to the rumours.”