What will he cook up net? Manchester City striker Carlos Tevez in yet another transfer history
When CarlosTevez arrived tosign for ManchesterCity 18months ago hewalked into the mother of allbear hugs from chief executiveGarry Cook. When heleaves either in the short orlong term it will be withoutso much as a handshake. Tevez rarely departs anywhere intraditional fashion, of course.When he left West Ham for ManchesterUnited, it seemed unclearwho owned him. I'm off! Carlos Tevez wants to leave Manchester City When he leftUnited for City two years later, itwas after a breakdown in his relationshipwith Sir Alex Ferguson. This time, though, it promises tobe spectacular even by his ownstandards.Tevez's statement last night leftmany questions unanswered butsuggests there is more drama tocome. He hinted at issues with seniorexecutives obviously Cook and chose to defend coach RobertoMancini.Nobody will be more surprised bythis than Mancini, who believeswithout question that his star playerdoesn't like him. Bad blood? City manager Mancini and Tevez had a touchline bust-up during last weekends win over Bolton Only nine days agoTevez was involved in a touchlinedispute with his manager when hewas taken off against Bolton.Mancini has been left 'bemused',according to those close to him, byTevez's transfer request. Havinglearned of it last Wednesday,Mancini sought an explanationfrom the 26-year-old in vain. Mancini is aware of the issues inTevez's private life but doesn'tunderstand why he would chooseto invite pressure on the club and,more pertinently, himself, midwaythrough a season that could yetend with City having a tilt at theBarclays Premier League title. Higher up the club's food chain,things are more simple. The blameis directed at Kia Joorabchian,Tevez's mentor and the man behindhis moves to Corinthians in Brazil,West Ham, Manchester United andnow to City. Joorabchian was instrumental inbringing Cook to the club but theirrelationship is now so poor theycommunicate only in writing. At 8.17am yesterday, City releasedallegations of a recent request for acontract extension and revealedthat Tevez is the club's highestpaid player, in an effort to contradictsuggestions that their starplayer is merely tired of football. Why, after all, would a centre forwardwant more money or a longercontract if, deep down, he justwanted to leave? The club deny theclaim that they were eager to offerTevez more money to keep himhappy. Last night the Argentineattempted to answer some of thosequestions, with a shot across City'sbows as powerful as any of his 10goals this season.It is clear City have an enormousproblem at a time in which theyfinally look well-placed for a run atthe top spot. With Tevez in the Canary Islandsand Mancini in Italy, the two areunlikely to speak until afterThursday's Europa League gameat Juventus.Mancini's tactics, though, may bethe best chance City have of bringingTevez back from the brink andthe Italian is starting to strugglefor patience. One option is to attempt to smokeTevez out via some strong words ofhis own, as Ferguson did withWayne Rooney recently. If thataddress comes, it will be onWednesday at a pre-Juventus pressconference. Breakdown: Tevez has hinted there may be a an issue with City supremo Garry Cook (right) Another tactic being consideredis relieving Tevez of the captaincy.Such aggressive moves would be instark contrast to the usualconservative Mancini code. Thechances are, they will come toolate. That they are being consideredsays much about Mancini's mood.He feels he has offered Tevez flexibilityin recent weeks and receivedonly disrespect in return. For example, the City boss offeredTevez three days off when a bookingagainst Bolton nine days agomeant he would be unavailable forSaturday's game at West Ham.Tevez asked for a fourth and wasgranted it on the condition that hedid an extended training sessionlast Thursday. Last Saturday's touchlinealtercation was then concludedwith a smile and a handshake inthe dressing room. Again, though,Mancini was unhappy that he wasleft to face difficult questions aboutsomething other than his team'swin. Key man: Tevez has been instrumental for City this season Mancini is far from the perfectman-manager. Those who knowhim appreciate this. He is, however,beginning to make gestures. Thisweek, for example, senior playersnot travelling to Turin have hadinput into their training schedule. His concern now is that the latestissue regarding Tevez is not allowedto undermine a team spirit thatcontinues to improve on the backof a run of good results and promisingperformances. Last night the latest suggestionsfrom Tevez's side were that theformer West Ham and Unitedplayer is simply determined toleave or, indeed, quit the gamecompletely. City remain determined that willnot happen in January. Given theclub's wealth and Tevez's longcontract, they do hold a certainamount of power.However, this could yet turn intothe stuff of nightmares for them. It has been suggested at timesthat City are a one-man team. Theycould be about to find out.
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