MANCHESTER, England, (Reuters) – Unsettled striker Carlos Tevez returned to Manchester City yesterday and the English city he had sworn he would never return to.
The Argentine has made no secret of his desire to leave the big-spending Premier League club, complaining of home sickness and saying there was nothing to do in Manchester and that the weather was bad.
Television pictures showed Tevez arriving at the club’s training ground after a holiday following his spell on international duty at the Copa America, having missed City’s 3-2 defeat by Manchester United in the Community Shield on Sunday. There has been daily speculation in the newspapers about the future of Tevez, who had seemed poised for a move to Corinthians before the Brazilian club pulled out last month.
The 27-year-old, whose work ethic and goals had made him a popular figure among City supporters, upset fans with scathing comments on an Argentine chat show in June.
Manchester “has nothing” and is “very expensive”, he said on the show according to local media, adding: “I’m never going back to Manchester, not even on holiday, not for anything.”
Tevez, who joined City from United in 2009, had said last December that he wanted to quit the club, before withdrawing his transfer request a few days later and setting about helping the side win the FA Cup, their first trophy for 35 years.
The forward, joint top scorer in the Premier League last season with 20 goals as City finished third, then issued a statement last month saying he wanted to leave, saying he was finding it hard living without his children in Manchester.
His return to City seems unlikely to stop the transfer rumour mill, particularly since the recent arrival of national team mate Sergio Aguero, seen as a natural replacement for him. City kick off their league season at home to promoted Swansea City next Monday and assistant manager David Platt has said Tevez was unlikely to start.
“I think it’ll be tight,” Platt told Sky Sports News. “But Carlos is a strange one, in the sense he doesn’t need a lot of time to get back fit… so we’ll see.”