AWOL Tevez says Mancini ignored calls

City striker maintains he tried to contact manager 10 times before heading home to Buenos Aires

Carlos Tevez has insisted that he attempted to contact his Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini around 10 times to ask for his permission to return to Argentina but received no communication from the Italian before taking the flight which means he is facing another two-week fine.

The Argentine maintains that he and his representatives asked two members of City's staff – acting chief executive John MacBeath and first-team coach Fausto Salsano – for permission to return home during the international break.

Salsano was ambiguous and said it was the manager's call, Tevez insists, while MacBeath, who was approached over the weekend, referred the player's representatives to Mancini, who then failed to respond to around five voicemails and the same number of text messages. Tevez insists he also tried to contact Mancini when his flight landed in Argentina on Tuesday.

"He has gone to see his family," said his spokesman, Paul McCarthy, though it is believed Tevez will also meet with Jorge Amor Ameal – president of his former club Boca Juniors. "We've said all along that Carlos is aware of the situation in terms of getting back to his fitness. I can't really say much more until he's back in the country."

Inevitably, the striker's story of why he decided to take the flight differs radically from City's version of events. Mancini has told the club that he received only one missed call from Tevez on Monday night. And while Tevez feels he has been treated differently to other players who have been granted a holiday during the international break, City say that the training regime is the same for the three players he has been training with – Nedum Onuoha, Wayne Bridge and Owen Hargreaves.

There had also been clear verbal instructions issues on Monday to all four players, stipulating that they would be granted Tuesday off but must return for duties on Wednesday morning. Onuoha, Bridge and Hargreaves were all present at the appointed time of 10.30am yesterday.

In what threatens to be a repeat of the evidential dispute which saw Tevez fined two weeks' wages for failing to warm up at Bayern Munich, City also say that MacBeath categorically rejected Tevez's request to return to Argentina, rather than refer it to the manager. There could be no ambiguity, they say.

It remained unclear last night precisely when Tevez might return, though there is little doubt that he should not have flown out of Britain until he had his manager's approval.

Tevez seems certain to be hit with another two-week fine – nearly £400,000 – though City will not act until they have heard his version of events first hand and the Premier League leaders have not yet ruled out more draconian penalties. Even Gordon Taylor, the chief executive of the Professional Footballers' Association who represented Tevez in his disciplinary hearing over the incident in Munich, admits the striker has put himself in a difficult position.

"I feel very disappointed, to say the least," said Taylor. "The lad is digging himself a hole and it is getting deeper. If, as I have been informed, he was clearly told he was not to return to Argentina and he has flagrantly breached that instruction, that goes to the heart of his contract and could be gross misconduct in anybody's view."

Balotelli: I'm not mad, just strange

Mario Balotelli has scarcely been in the Premier League for 18 months but has already managed to set fire to his own house, throw darts at a team-mate, visit a women's prison and engage in a running battle with Manchester's traffic wardens, but the Manchester City striker yesterday insisted he was not "mad". He did, though, concede that he does some "strange" things.

"I am not mad, not at all, even if sometimes I do things that are a bit strange," he said on international duty in Italy. Instead, he believes it is the English media who have ensured his off-field misdemeanours attract more attention than his on-field achievements. "They tend to talk more about my private life than what I do on the pitch," he said.

"This is normal, but I get tired of it. And if I did not do the things I do, I would be bored. English newspapers like The Sun are worse than the Italian ones. A newspaper that puts naked ladies on the front cover strikes me as being particularly ugly.

"For now, though, I am happy with City. If the time is right in the future, though, I would return to Inter, but I like AC Milan and will not hide that."

Rory Smith

Sport
The sun rises over St Andrews golf course, but will it be a new dawn for the Royal and Ancient Golf Club?
sportAnd it's Yes to women (at the R&A)
Arts and Entertainment
Friends is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year
tvSeries celebrates 20th anniversary
Sport
Yaya Touré (left) and Bayern Munich’s Spanish defender Juan Bernat
footballToure's lack of defensive work is big problem for City
Voices
voicesApple continually kill off smaller app developers, and that's no good for anyone
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Liam Neeson said he wouldn't
tv

Liam Neeson's Downton dreams

Sport
Wembley Stadium
footballNews follows deal with Germany
Arts and Entertainment
A spell in the sun: Emma Stone and Colin Firth star in ‘Magic in the Moonlight’
filmReview: Magic In The Moonlight
Sport
A 'Sir Alex Feguson' tattoo
football

Arts and Entertainment
Ben Whishaw is replacing Colin Firth as the voice of Paddington Bear
tv

Thriller is set in the secret world of British espionage

Life and Style
life

News
ScienceGallery: Otherwise known as 'the best damn photos of space you'll see till 2015'
Life and Style
fashion

Bomber jacket worn by Mary Berry sells out within an hour

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

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week