“Fergie, sign him up! Fergie, Fergie sign him up!” the Stretford End chanted over the top of Sir Alex Ferguson’s end of season speech. Ferguson had just claimed his 11th league title and United’s 18th, equalling Liverpool’s record, yet sections of the crowd believed there was a more pressing issue to deal with; Carlos Tevez.
Our little Argie had worked his arse off for two years for every minute he was on the field and our fans loved him for it. During his first season, his attitude seemed perfect. He did all he could for the team, he spoke often of his love for the fans and of his aim to spend years at the club. Everything was going well for him and his attitude matched that.
However, when things weren’t going as well for him, his attitude took a distinct turn for the worst. Dramatic head shaking when he was subbed off the pitch and speaking to the press time and again about his unhappiness at his present situation.
With Ronaldo going, the press seem to think United fans want Tevez to stay even more. That may be the case for many reds, but it certainly isn’t how I see it!
Ferguson tolerated Ronaldo and I suppose he had to. Once the decision had been made he was staying for the season, our manager knew if he really had a go that Ronaldo would throw his dummy out good and proper and that would only fuck up our season. So his petulance was allowed to continue.
After his tantrum when he was subbed against City, the front cover of Red Issue showed a shared thought bubble from Ferguson and Ronaldo which read ‘That’s the last time that will happen!’ or words to that effect. Fuck this, some stuck up wanker parading around like he’s bigger than the club. It was allowed to happen because the season was well under way but it couldn’t have been allowed to happen from the start of next season. The respect I have for our manager increases every time he ensures the reputation of our club is still in tact.
Having allowed Ronaldo to behave that way, there’s no way we can allow the same behaviour from Tevez. Whilst Tevez is some way from having the attitude Ronaldo has, we’ve already started to see the early signs of it. He’s already been bad-mouthing the club to the press and he’s already made a scene when he’s been subbed off. Sorry lad, you’ve just played 75 minutes for Manchester United and should be thanking your lucky stars. Get a fucking grip!
People argue that his reactions have been normal and that it just shows he wants to play. But is that the normal to deal with disappointment? If your boss tells you that you haven’t been put on a project that you were particuarly interested in working on, do you tut loudly and keep shaking your head? Do you shrug your shoulders and look at him angrily? Course not. If you behave that way it is a choice, not a reaction to disappointment. Tevez chose to react that way and whether it was for the cameras or for potential clubs or anything else, it is unnecessary.
Essentially though, whatever your opinion on his attitude, whether you understand him or not, he isn’t going to be happy here. He thinks he’s good enough to start for all of the big games but sadly he isn’t. Even Wayne Rooney missed out on the crucial derby day clash at Old Trafford this season, starting on the bench despite not carrying any injury, which shows nobody is intouchable. Tevez isn’t as good as Rooney and if he isn’t prepared to be rotated, then he is better off elsewhere. That’s not being harsh or unappreciative of what Tevez has done for us, rather looking at the situation realistically. He can play every single minute for Manchester City, he can double his wages and he can see how happy he is there. Best of luck to him.
What irritates me most about this is the way he spoke so fondly of the fans and how we now look because of our response to him. He chose to make a connection with us and before this season I honestly think we all just assumed he would sign. The manager has repeatedly told the press he wants Tevez to stay so I don’t know what else he wanted…? Should United have met the asking price even if they didn’t think it was an accurate value? But because the club hasn’t done that, Tevez is considering leaving, which is fair enough, but moving to our hated rivals? Is that what you do to fans you supposedly love so much? If he truly believes the club have fucked him over then of course he is entitled to go wherever he wants, but if he can forget about the fans so easily, I wonder why on earth he bothered to establish a relationship with us in the first place? If that relationship can be so easily broken then what does that say about him? Fans chanted over Sir Alex Ferguson’s speech for him but now he is open to a transfer to City or Liverpool?
I’m tired of this bullshit. I’m tired of these players with big egos thinking they can dictate everything, as if playing for Manchester United makes us the lucky ones, not them. The only players I feel lucky to have are the ones who feel lucky to be here. Players like Wayne Rooney who say they want to spend the rest of their careers here or players like Patrice Evra who thank God for being at our club. If Tevez thinks the best way to handle this situation is to question the manager’s decision to play him for only 45 minutes of a European Cup final and to speak negatively about the club to the press repeatedly, then he is mistaken.
I don’t expect all players to see United the way we do. I understand why Real Madrid were the goal for Ronaldo and I understand why Tevez doesn’t see our club as the be all and end all. I don’t expect every player who signs for us to behave as though we’re the best thing since sliced bread and worship the club and fans. But I do expect every single one of our players to show respect to the club, to have awareness of how privileged they are to be here, and to get on with their job without showing us up.
It doesn’t all have to be over for Tevez here though. There is always the possibility that he will realise what he is giving up on by walking away from Manchester United. But if he doesn’t realise that, if he thinks playing for City is a better option than playing for United, how can any of us argue that he is the kind of player we want wearing our colours?