Tevez could be off the hook over subs bench revolt
City blink first as accounts of the player’s touchline mutiny fail to tally
HAVE Manchester City lost their bottle over Carlos Tevez? According to 'exclusives' carried by both the Sun and the Daily Mirror, the Citizens have blinked first in their stand-off with the Argentine bad boy. As a result, when Tevez attends the club's disciplinary hearing on Friday he will not be charged with refusing to take the field of play against Bayern Munich.
Ever since that fateful night in the Allianz Arena last month, City have been adamant that Tevez disobeyed Robert Mancini's instructions to come on as a second half substitute. The City manager was furious as a result, vowing that Tevez was "finished" at Eastlands. Tevez has always denied the allegation, saying it was a "misunderstanding" caused by "confusion on the bench".
Now, according to the Mirror, Tevez will stand before the disciplinary panel accused of "refusing to carry out Roberto Mancini's and Ivan Carminati's instructions to resume warming up with a view to playing in the match".
Apparently the lesser charge has been prompted by a lack of witnesses to Mancini's assertion that Tevez refused to take the field.
It's alleged in statements given by City players and staff that Mancini was "nervous" on account of Bayern's 2-0 lead in the Champions League group match. At one moment he is alleged to have shouted instructions to Tevez in Italian, a language the 27-year-old Argentine doesn't understand.
The Sun claims that Ivan Carminati, City's fitness coach, told the inquiry that Tevez stood up as if to warm up "before Mancini told the player he was not going to play him". In addition Mancini's two assistants, David Platt and Brian Kidd, were unable to validate their manager's allegation.
It was Kidd's duty on the night in question to fill out the substitutes' card to give to the relevant UEFA official but apparently the inquiry discovered that "no substitute's card with the name of Tevez on it was ever filled out".
Mancini hasn't changed his story and insists that Tevez replied 'no' when asked to get ready to come on, but the Italian also apparently conceded that because of the noise in the stadium it was "hard to hear what was being said".
That tallies with a submission from a member of the City staff who, according to the Mirror, told the disciplinary inquiry that Tevez replied "por que?" - - Spanish for 'why?' - when Mancini told him to warm up.
Tevez, who was suspended for a fortnight after the incident, has always maintained his innocence and is ready to fight to clear his name.