Hughes admires Tevez's City start but doubts his fitness for opener

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The Independent Online

Carlos Tevez will have a week's intensive training before Mark Hughes decides whether to pitch Manchester City's new signing into the Barclays Premier League battle at Blackburn.

With Argentina coach Diego Maradona heeding Hughes' plea to leave Tevez out of his country's friendly with Russia in Moscow, City have the chance to build up his fitness after a 25-minute outing against Celtic on Saturday.

Hughes is doubtful about Tevez's chances of starting at Ewood Park given it was his first appearance of the entire pre-season campaign as he struggled to overcome a heel problem. However, recognising what a positive impact the 25-year-old had on the City supporters on Saturday, as well as his contribution to a 2-1 win, the Blues chief is eager to give Tevez every opportunity.

"I would like to think Carlos will play a part on Saturday," said Hughes. "He has been a bit frustrated because he has not been able to put any weight on the heel. But he looked really sharp when he came on.

"The reaction from the crowd was fantastic. He's going to do great things for us. He gives the team a trigger and a focus."

Hughes will also need to check on the hip problem that forced Kolo Touré out after just 18 minutes yesterday, but he confident Touré will play against Sam Allardyce's men.

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