James Lawton: Still complaining, Carlos? It's time City cut their losses on Argentine

Tevez’s worst critic could not dispute the huge part he played in the first trophy of City’s new age

Has anyone ever sat down with Carlos Tevez and tried to explain to him some of the requirements of truly growing up?

Has he been told that millions upon millions of his fellow human beings do in fact know what it is to suffer dislocation in their personal lives, and enforced separation from their loved ones, sometimes simultaneously with the daily risk of having their heads or various limbs blown off?

Or that so very few of them are paid the best part of £1m a month and thus have the chance to reach a mature and equable solution?

The answer is obviously yes and judging by the look of strain that appears on his handsome features whenever Tevez is mentioned, Roberto Mancini has been most burdened with the task.

Now, though, it seems the worst of the ordeal may be over for the Manchester City manager with the suggestion that the club chairman, Khaldoon al-Mubarak, is not only "sanguine" about the consequences of the latest overwrought effusions from the player but prepared to come up with around £40m for a ready-made replacement.

The nomination is apparently Atletico Madrid's excellent young striker, and Diego Maradona's son-in-law, Sergio Aguero, who on top of his other virtues offers the possibility that he will understand the world is not likely to fall from its axis if he happens to notice the sun isn't shining over his mansion in one of the most pleasant suburbs of Manchester.

It will, of course, be understandable enough if some City fans get upset if the big football market warms to Tevez's belief that, at anywhere up to £50m, he represents outstanding value.

True, he regularly sneers at a city which was good enough for John Barbirolli, while rescuing the Hallé Orchestra from the ravages of the Luftwaffe, George Best, Bert Trautmann, Eric Cantona, Malcolm Allison, Clive Lloyd and the wonderful flyweight Jackie Brown, somewhere which pioneered the Industrial Revolution, any number of major engineering and medical innovations and to this day remains a place which can separate most men from their pretensions as quickly as any place on earth.

But then Tevez can play and whatever the state of his ego, however inflated it had become, he has always done it with superb commitment and drive for City and before that, Manchester United and West Ham.

No, he is not as good as he sometimes seems to think he is, but this is not to say he is not the most formidable of players and, indeed, someone who has been utterly fundamental to City's march into the elite of English football and the dawn of their challenge in Europe.

Tevez at times has been City, a source of unending self-belief and certainty in a team that often seemed shackled both by Mancini's cautious tactics and an unshakeable sense that they were a collection of warring and, in some cases, overpriced individuals.

Tevez's worst critic could not dispute the huge part he played in gathering in the confidence that brought City's first trophy of their new age, at the expense of United, and enabled them to leapfrog Arsenal. When City produced the first hard evidence last season that champions Chelsea might not be the team some of us thought they were, it was Tevez who made the point most impressively.

He seized upon the uncertainties of John Terry and Ashley Cole and scored the decisive goal. In last summer's World Cup, Maradona said that "Carlito" was at the heart of the Argentina effort – the player most eager to do everything he could for the team.

Now, he tells the City fans: "I hope the people understand the difficult circumstances I have been living under for the past 12 months in regards to my family. Living without my children in Manchester has been incredibly challenging for me. Everything I do, I do for my daughters, Katie and Florencia."

Some fans may want to balance such pleading against the dismissive performance their erstwhile hero put in recently on a chat show back in Buenos Aires. He told his sympathetic interrogator that he couldn't bear the idea of living in Manchester – with or without his girls. Manchester was "small and wet" and when it was over with City he simply couldn't countenance the idea of returning for any reason, and least of all a holiday.

Tevez should go, as soon as any major club is prepared to take the best of him and live with the rest, the foibles, the mood swings and, most disturbingly, the overweening belief in his supreme right to perfect happiness.

City want to be one of the most important clubs in football. They have come some of the way. Far enough, certainly, to know that it is time to turn their backs on the pantomime emotions of Carlos Tevez.

Arts and Entertainment
'The Archers' has an audience of about five million
radioA growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried
Arts and Entertainment
Henry VIII played by Damien Lewis
tvReview: Scheming queens-in-waiting, tangled lines of succession and men of lowly birth rising to power – sound familiar?
News
Sir David Attenborough
people
Life and Style
Young girl and bowl of cereal
food + drink
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Comic miserablist Larry David in 'Curb Your Enthusiasm'
peopleDirector of new documentary Misery Loves Comedy reveals how he got them to open up
Sport
football
News
i100
Life and Style
Virtual reality headset: 'Essentially a cinema screen that you strap to your face'
techHow virtual reality is thrusting viewers into frontline of global events and putting film-goers at the heart of the action
Arts and Entertainment
Ready to open the Baftas, rockers Kasabian are also ‘great film fans’
musicExclusive: Rockers promise an explosive opening to the evening
Life and Style
David Bowie by Duffy
fashion
Arts and Entertainment
Hell, yeah: members of the 369th Infantry arrive back in New York
booksWorld War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel
News
advertisingVideo: The company that brought you the 'Bud' 'Weis' 'Er' frogs and 'Wasssssup' ads, has something up its sleeve for Sunday's big match
Arts and Entertainment
tv
News
i100
Environment
Dame Vivienne Westwood speaking at a fracking protest outside Parliament on Monday (AP)
environment
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
Why the league system no longer measures up

League system no longer measures up

Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert
Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Former one-day coach says he will ‘observe’ their World Cup games – but ‘won’t be jumping up and down’
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness