Tevez apology and explanation fails to satisfy livid City supporters
Published 28/09/2011 | 12:41
CARLOS Tevez's apparent refusal to play for Manchester City last night has been met with "disgust" by some of the club's supporters who travelled to Munich.
City boss Roberto Mancini claimed that the Argentina striker refused to go on as a substitute in the Champions League tie against Bayern Munich, which City lost 2-0.
Fans inside the Allianz Arena were left baffled as reports of the events seeped through and Dave Wallace, editor of the King of the Kippax fanzine, told Press Association Sport: "We were in the ground and wondering why (Mancini) wasn't bringing Tevez on. Then the word went round that he's refused to come on and everyone was pretty shocked and surprised, pretty disgusted really.
"At 2-0, we could have still saved the game, and most fans who I spoke to the reaction was 'it's a disgrace and he should never play for the club again'.
"City fans had paid a lot to go over there and got up at 3am, and it's just not on. There's not a lot of sympathy among City fans for him."
Tevez issued a statement this morning blaming a "misunderstanding" and denying that he refused to play.
But Wallace continued: "If he didn't refuse to play then why didn't he strip off and get on the field? I don't understand that. He's obviously just having a few second thoughts now.
"If there is any way this can be sorted out, I think we'd go for that because there's no solution to the situation with the transfer fee and the money he's on, and we do need him as the extra striker in the squad. But it's very difficult to see how it could be resolved.
"He's been a problem for a long time and I can't see any way back now, even if he gets on his hands and knees and apologises profusely.
"And I can't see where he's going. We said it in the summer, nobody can afford him - Corinthians supposedly put a bid in but they didn't have any money - so it's just a stalemate.
"I don't think City will sell him for less than his market value, which is about £45million still - although that could be dropping if he carries on behaving like that.
"He only stays a couple of years at any club before he starts shaking things up. It's a great shame, because he's a great player and he has elevated us to the position we're now in."
City have made a flying start to the season, with five wins and a draw from six Barclays Premier League games, which in Wallace's view makes Tevez's apparent discontent even harder to fathom.
"We've won a lot of games, only drawn one, we're in the Champions League, second top - could it get any better for any player?" said Wallace.
"Whether (Tevez) should have been brought on earlier last night is a moot point but when (Nigel) De Jong was brought on he shored it up, we were getting overrun. He was going to be brought on a little bit later and we could have saved the game."
Football Supporters Federation chairman Malcolm Clarke was also shocked by last night's events, and told Press Association Sport: "This is highly unusual, I can't remember this happening before when a player is on the bench.
"We've had cases in the past with players allegedly refusing to turn out for their clubs but never in my recollection when they've got as far as sitting on the bench.
"If you're on the bench, it's self-evident that you might be called upon to play at some point during the game. That's what makes this a bit peculiar - you'd have thought if he was refusing to play, then he wouldn't have got as far as the bench.
"It's self-evident that the manager's the person who selects the team and decides when substitutes are going to play, and I'm sure virtually every supporter would agree with that.
"It'll be interesting to see what happens now. They've got to sort it out - the manager appears to have said that he won't be playing for Manchester City again, but that obviously may depend to an extent on whether there was or was not a misunderstanding."