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'Free striker' role has brought goals says Tevez

Manchester City striker Carlos Tevez believes his impressive goals tally this season is down to a greater freedom to attack.

The 26-year-old Argentina international has scored 20 goals in his past 18 games for City and has scored 28 in total since his switch from cross-town rivals United last summer.

That return is far superior to his goalscoring record at Old Trafford and Tevez, who will line up against his former club this weekend, believes that is because he was used in a more defensive capacity by United boss Sir Alex Ferguson.

"I am playing now as a free striker. This is my position," he told the Daily Mail.

"I am now playing in the position I played in Argentina and Brazil and in the last 10 games for West Ham.

"At Manchester United, I was asked to defend more. It was a different responsibility.

"Now I go on to the pitch and I am physically fit and mentally strong. I say to myself, 'you have to win the game for City'.

"In my head, before the game, I think, 'goals, goals, goals'. It's 28 of them and still counting."

Tevez admits he now looks forward to the Manchester derby more than most fixtures in the season.

"I love this game. It is special, different," he added. "There is an argument going on in my head about why I feel so strongly about it. It is nothing to do with the spotlight being on me, I did not transfer from United to City for the controversy.

"OK, I played for both teams, so I understand the feeling and the emotion from both supporters. City's fans have been very good to me, very welcoming."