Former problem child Carlos Tevez is thankfully no longer a headache for Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson. Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini is instead faced with the challenge of a multi million pound poker game being played by club Chief Executive Garry Cook, Football Administrator Brian Marwood, Tevez himself and his agent Kia Joorabchian. The row over Tevez’s future deepened further on Monday with City sources indicating that the club will sue if he walks away or pursue him through the courts for breach of contract if he simply decides not to play.
City also claims to have damning email evidence showing how Joorabchian asked for a contract extension for his client just a few weeks ago. This is denied by the Tevez camp with the player himself claiming that “I could have signed an improved contract offered by the club for this season however this decision is not about money. I have made that clear to both the board and the management on several occasions.”
Manchester City deny his version of events relating to a contract offer “Significantly, over recent months, the club has also received numerous requests from Carlos’ representative to renegotiate and improve his playing contract as well as more recently, a request to extend that contract by another year. This has not been granted. He is the highest paid player at the club.” So who are we supposed to believe?
Speculation can often be far off the mark. Guesswork and gut feelings often play a big part but it can also provide a glimpse of what may really be going on behind the spin. It may not turn out to be absolutely correct but the real truth can sometimes be very close to being right on the money. That truth may well involve Manchester United and more to the point, Wayne Rooney in the Tevez soap opera.
It has now emerged that Tevez first made City aware that he wanted out back in August – about the same time that Rooney did the same at United, coincidence? Nobody can say with any confidence whether both those decisions were made solely by the players themselves or whether they were heavily influenced by their respective, smooth talking agents.
After all, who would have hit an almighty jackpot if Rooney went to City and Tevez moved elsewhere in multi million transfer deals? Rooney’s agent Paul Stretford is reported to have been a long time friend of Marwood at City and both are said to have been totally confident of clinching the Rooney deal. Tevez’s representative Kia Joorabchian has now claimed that ‘broken promises’ are the reason for his player wanting to quit City. Did those ‘promises’ include allowing Tevez to go once the club was assured of getting the United striker?
Rooney’s unexpected U-turn left the Blues sitting between a rock and a hard place, forced to break the promise which had been made to Tevez. Could that be what Joorabchian is alluding to?
I initially had a lot of sympathy for a man who had his young children taken thousands of miles away by his former partner but that soon evaporated when Tevez spent his four days leave of absence sunning himself in the Caribbean. If a father was so devastated about losing his children that he was even contemplating retirement, why did he not jump on the first flight back to Buenos Aires instead of going away to ‘clear my head’ ?
There can be little doubt that the two agents involved played a huge role in the whole sorry saga. It also shows the wisdom of Ferguson’s decision to let Tevez leave Old Trafford. Now if only Rooney can come to his senses and gets rid of Stretford!
Would you have liked to see Tevez remain at Manchester United?