Carlos Tevez certainly ranks as one of the most controversial players the Premier League has ever witnessed.
Enormously talented yet deeply flawed, the Argentinian striker was a magnet for trouble during his time in England with West Ham, Manchester United and Manchester City.
Some of it wasn’t his own doing, like the ‘Welcome to Manchester’ billboard that City used when they signed Tevez from their local rivals in 2009.
But there were also plenty of occasions where Tevez’s behaviour made him a nightmare for his managers and a dream for the media.
There’s the time he refused to play for Man City, prompting then-boss Roberto Mancini to declare that he would never play for the club again.
Then, at City’s Premier League title parade in 2012, Tevez held a sign that read: ‘R.I.P. Fergie’.
Tevez wasn’t happy with Ferguson
At the time, Tevez still held a grudge following Sir Alex Ferguson’s refusal to pay the £25 million that it would have taken to turn the striker’s ‘lease’ period into a permanent deal at United in 2009.
The Scot said at the time: “I didn’t think he was worth £25m.”
Tevez showed that those words were still fresh on his mind when he scored twice against United in the Carling Cup in 2010.
Tevez tormented his former team, bagging a brace as City secured the advantage in the first leg of their semi-final tie.
And he wanted to let Ferguson and United’s directors know just what they were missing out on after scoring his second goal.
Tevez celebrated in front of Fergie
In the 65th minute, the attacker headed home from close range to make it 2-1 and then proceeded to run to the touchline and cup his ears right in front of his former manager.
The message couldn’t have been clearer.
Tevez later defended his celebration, admitting he wasn’t happy with United’s treatment of him following his departure from Old Trafford.
“Football is a form of theatre and it was just a form of banter,” he said, per Sky Sports. “There was nothing malicious intended.
“For the second goal I ran to the touchline and cupped my ears and looked up to the part of the ground where the United directors were sitting, and also to Ferguson in the dugout, because I wanted them to know this was my response to them saying I was not worth the money.
“People from United have been speaking about me publicly and criticising me but I wanted to do my talking on the pitch because that was the best way of responding to all these people, such as [Gary] Neville, who were saying United were right to let me go.”
Few players had the bravery to stand up to Ferguson, but Tevez was a completely different breed.
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