Yes- Pete South
Carlos Tevez has always been a man to provoke a reaction wherever he’s gone, but for whatever team he has played for, he has earned nothing but love.
West Ham fans still speak in reverence of the goal that kept them afloat in the Premier League against Manchester United back in 2007 while consigning Sheffield United to the second tier of English football.
United soon snapped him up and before long fans were singing ‘Fergie, sign him up’ as the Scot contemplated offering the Argentinian a long-term deal at Old Trafford.
So it came as no great surprise that Tevez’s first public appearance in a blue shirt since September was greeted with warm applause by the club’s fans and even less surprising that his goal in the reserve fixture against Bolton on Tuesday was cheered so vigorously.
He was even mobbed by the club’s fans and gave away his shirt to a fan at half time; if this was a PR exercise it was executed to perfection.
The debacle in Munich was an unedifying experience for all involved. Some of Tevez’s comments before and after that game were disrespectful and if his version of events are to be believed neither himself nor Roberto Mancini covered themselves in any glory.
Now he is back at the cub there is little point in ostracizing him or casting him adrift.
City fans can see his is making an effort to offer an olive branch to the club having issued an apology over the incident that sparked his five-month exile and having reportedly dropped half a stone already in his efforts to feature for the first team.
Fans are often accused of having short memories but the love they have for him stretches back to the days when he was the club’s captain and leading scorer, when before a title challenge was in the offing took the game by the scruff of the neck and did what he could to secure three points for his side.
His playing style is the type fans adore. All guts and gusto, his effort levels alone endeared him to the City’s faithful, and when he also brings quality in attack and goals – he was the league’s joint-leading scorer last time round – he becomes a potent force.
If nothing else, City and manager Roberto Mancini, the only real obstacle to a smooth transition now that the fans are onboard, know that he is a match winner, a man to have on your side when chasing a title against opponents who will never relent.
There is no point in bearing grudges and hindering their title challenge at such a crucial time of the season, if the summer brings a conclusion to Tevez’s time in Manchester so be it.
But for now the fans deserve credit for proving their intelligence and willingness to accept Tevez back at the club – it is for both theirs and his benefit.
No- Nick Howson
When Carlos Tevez refused to follow management orders during Manchester City's defeat to Bayern Munich, he simultaneously confirmed all our fears that the modern day footballer is just an overpaid mercenary that holds too much power.
The Argentine's refusal to conform with the requests of his manager Roberto Mancini followed summer revelations suggesting he wanted to leave the club due to family reasons.
After serving his four-week suspension, Tevez went on a three-month unauthorised leave of absence, only returning to full training in February.
Now, having made up with manager Mancini, Tevez looks set to make his return to the fold for City title run-in, having featured in two practice games, the second which saw him net his first goal since his return.
The goal was met with adulation from those City fans who attended the fixture, and comments thereafter confirmed that fans are ready to welcome him with open arms.
There's no doubt that when fit, Tevez will be a valuable asset in City's title hunt, a big reason why the Etihad Stadium faithful will be delighted with his return.
If City fans are happy to put the integrity of their club behind success on the field, then frankly both Tevez and the supporters deserve each other.
No doubt every player deserves a second chance, but this would be Tevez's third chance to reconsolidate. Supporters have been spoilt to such an extent over the last 12 months that seemingly there are no boundaries when success is in the offing.
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