Why City should use Tevez to win the league... and then DUMP him
The Liverpool dressing room I was part of would have sorted Carlos Tevez out within 20 seconds of him refusing to warm-up in Munich.
Therein lies the problem though - the money in football today, the contracts the players are on and the control they have means there is no chance of the dressing room dealing with stuff like that as they should.
What Tevez has done rankles with most professionals, sickens them.
Yet I think most are pragmatic enough to accept Manchester City must use and abuse him now, to get something out of the situation.
They can forgive, but they don’t have to forget.
You saw that reverse pass he produced to create City's winner against Chelsea. There are perhaps three or four players in the Premier League who could have done that.
So City can use him when they need to turn games and keep them in the title race... and then dump him in the summer.
In the process, Tevez may add some value to his price tag too, so the club gets some return on their investment.
He’s bad news, but if the dressing room accepts him back and they go on to win the title, then you’d accept it for a few months, even if deep down everyone knows it shows football has descended to crazy depths.
When I was playing, the clubs controlled everything – the money, the contracts, the future. Now most of the world is suffering, yet footballers’ wages are still spiralling. It’s out of control.
City can take a little bit of that control back by using the situation to their advantage, and then kicking him out in the summer as soon as they possibly can.
Sir Alex Ferguson got it right with Tevez when he said the money he was demanding was far too much given the aggro he brought with him.
Roberto Mancini doesn’t need that aggro, because he already gets it from Mario Balotelli.
He’s got 25-30 first-team professionals there, and he can’t spend 80 per cent of his time looking after only two of them, when the rest turn up and do their job properly every day.
So use Tevez if the players can accept him back briefly, and then dump him. And the players probably do accept him back.
In every club, there are plenty who can’t stand the sight of each other, but get on with it.
The Spanish-speaking lads will probably get on with him, and accept him for what he is, and the rest probably won’t care, providing they are still in the title race.
While I would much rather be in Manchester United’s position, City are right in there with a chance, and that is why Mancini is being clever with Tevez.
He’s got an embarrassment of riches up front, and with Vincent Kompany coming back, they’ll be at their strongest for the run-in.
And Mancini seems to have learnt his lessons in his team selection.
He reverted to type against Swansea and Sporting Lisbon, but against Chelsea he picked a team to go and win without giving in to his instinct.
So they’re right in there fighting United, and with Tevez providing that bit of magic he obviously possesses, who knows?