Gary Neville has revealed how he became “annoyed” by Carlos Tevez and his attitude in his second season at Manchester United, insisting that he “downed tools” during the 2008-09 campaign.
Tevez joined the Red Devils from West Ham back in 2007, winning the Premier League and Champions League in his first season with Sir Alex Ferguson’s side.
He would also claim silverware in his second season at Old Trafford – winning a league title, Club World Cup and League Cup – although Neville believes that he didn’t show the appropriate levels of commitment during that time.
He told Sky Sports: “What annoyed me about Tevez was he downed tools in his second season, that and sitting on the treatment bench, starting coming out late for training, started messing around, he was playing the club.
“I couldn’t stand that. Particularly as I was at the time, which was a ferocious Manchester United person inside, never thought about anything else in my life, only United every single day.
“And the idea that someone would come into that changing room and not be at their best. I understood that he had circumstances but his people were in his ear all of the time, he was so led by his people.
“It was always going to come to an end like it did. I felt disappointed as a professional that he didn’t act the right way. I didn’t have a problem with players leaving the club like David Beckham left the club, Cristiano Ronaldo left the club, Ruud van Nistelrooy left the club, great, great players.
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“But there was a way to leave the club and there was a way to behave when you were there. So the problem I had with Tevez wasn’t that he went to play for Manchester City – which in itself is a problem for me – that wasn’t the main issue, it was the way in which it played out in the last few months. I didn’t like it.”
Tevez would leave the Red Devils in 2009 to sign for City, with the infamous ‘Welcome to Manchester’ banner serving to further stir up the rivalry between both clubs and their supporters.
The Argentine – who would later go on to play for Juventus, Shanghai Shenhua and Boca Juniors – would secure the third Premier League title of his career during his spell at the Etihad Stadium.