Monday, 11 July 2011

Life after Tevez (when, not if, he leaves)

I think we all know by now that Carlos Tevez wants a route out of Manchester as fast as possible for whatever reason. But how could the sale of Tevez affect Manchester City?

Don't cry for me Argentina. Not sure about them, but I doubt City will be shedding any tears. 

Of course any answer given in response to this question is hypothetical and would vary from person to person depending on their allegiance to player or club. And someone has to stump up a reasonable offer for him first anyway, but here's my thoughts on it.

Who would be made captain?

The first thing to deal with would be the club's captaincy. This choice should be as natural as breathing for Mancini, give the armband to Kompany. Vinnie is a natural born leader and the vast majority of fans feel that he should have been given the armband last season from December onwards (at least).

City are in good Kompany with Vinnie

When you stop to consider the two you could not find a larger contrast between any other player at the club if you tried.

Tevez, despite coming from one of the worst places on the entire planet feels that Manchester is just not good enough for him. He says he just has to move away from the club because he just can't settle there with or without his family. Manchester only has two good restaurants according to the Argentinian who rarely leaves the house due to feeling like an outsider. Of course this is partly due to him barely being able to string 3 words together in English despite being in the country for 5 years.

Kompany on the other hand appears to have made Manchester his home and cemented his ties with the City by marrying a local girl last month after becoming parents in June 2010. He also speaks fluent English and did so before even moving to City in 2008. Manchester doesn't appear to be such a hell hole to the 25 year old Belgian.

On the pitch both players never give less than 100%, that can not be disputed. But even there there is a stark contrast in the way both go about their business on the pitch. Not once has Kompany spat his dummy out over a decision that the manager has made. Not once has he argued publicly with the manager. He had a brief spat with Yaya Toure during one game that lasted no longer than 5 seconds after a mix up between the two. Then they both just got on with playing like teammates should do. I don't need to go into any detail about Tevez's attitude towards manager Mancini do I?

I could go on all day about how Kompany is a better captain than Tevez, but the point remains that despite it just being an opinion, it's a ridiculously widely accepted opinion amongst the fans at City.

How would it affect team morale?

You would expect it would have some negative affect at first, but possibly not all that much is the answer to that one. We're not privy to what goes on in the changing room on a day to day basis but apart from Zabaleta and Silva who would converse with Tevez on a regular basis? Nigel De Jong knows a bit of Spanish as we saw at the FA Cup parade, and Yaya spent around 3 years in Spain with Barcelona but those are the only others I can think of.

Tevez has kept himself fairly isolated by the look of it. There was one very telling video of the squad warming up in a group and where was Tevez? About 10 feet behind the group training on his own. Not what you'd expect from club captain and talisman is it?

The one thing you can guarantee is that players wont have the annoyance of the "will he wont he" saga taking the shine off any of their performances like it has done since December. I don't care what anyone says, there must be at least a small amount of frustration or anger over the way in which Carlos has gone about dragging their Club through the mud and still remained as team captain.

What about performance on the pitch?

Although when Tevez was injured City went through a bit of a goal drought they actually won a higher percentage of games without Carlos. Tevez's ability is undoubted but when you have a team that is relatively young as a unit it's easy to focus on a player like Tevez and run everything through him. And that's exactly what happened.

At first City looked like a team without purpose without him, lacking any sort of urgency going forward. Even the magical David Silva looked lost as to who to thread a ball to without Tevez buzzing around in front of him. Never the less, City learned to play without him and other players began to shine.

The longer City played without Tevez the more of a team they became. Players gained confidence in their own ability to play without feeling as though they had to get the ball to Tevez for him to score. This was never more evident in the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley against bitter rivals Manchester United.

Although that game was won by only one goal, it was a comprehensive victory none the less. After the first 25-30 minutes City pretty much controlled the game with some fantastic performances from players all over the pitch.

Who will step up to score the goals?

Nigel De Jong? Ok ok, seriously though, who cares who it is? I've already pointed out that City actually won a higher percentage of games without Carlos. Although fans want to see goals, the points on the board and the place in the table is all that really counts at the end of the day.

There were 19 players that scored for City last season, albeit only 8 of them scored 5 or more goals with 3 of those breaking into double figures. However when you factor in that 20 year old Balotelli spent a lot of his first season in the Prem injured or suspended, scoring 10 goals and appearing to mature on the pitch before our eyes you would hope for a great season ahead.

Dzeko is also another option, scoring 6 goals since January after a month's break from the German league, despite being played out wide, behind Tevez, or coming off the bench. You would also expect more from him in the coming season as the team learns about his abilities and strengths during a game.

The Bosnian diamond and the Italian winker. Sounds like a low budget comedy.

Yaya, Johnson, and Silva all chipped in with their share of goals. Johnson is still improving as a player, Silva could do with a little bit more selfishness in front of goal, and Yaya even with his share of critics seems to have grown into his attacking role.

So even if no single player replaces all the goals it's reasonable to assume that they will at least be spread around the team. Although the team may initially miss his input as they fully adjust to life after Tevez, the overall benefits should far outweigh the negatives.

1 comment:

  1. I am very sad brother ,, about tevez leave ..I love city ...
    Very hard replacement .. but we have nice striker ,like dzeko ,ballo :-)
    I am sorry my english not good . eagle ctid .


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