Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has criticised Carlos Tevez in his programme notes for the Manchester derby.
The Man City striker – who of course played for the Red Devils prior to his move to Eastlands – seemed to obey manager Roberto Mancini when he called him on as a substitute against Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League.
Ferguson did however hail his Manchester City counterpart Mancini for his zero tolerance handling of the situation, reaffirming his belief that player power had spiralled out of control.
“When Carlos appeared reluctant to come on as a substitute I saw a coach angry and disturbed and rightly so because nobody should be bigger at a club than a manager,” wrote Ferguson.
“He is the man who must have absolute authority and to give way to a challenge to his control is the biggest mistake a boss can make.
“I am not saying this to have a go at Carlos. There will be cynics who say I have it in for him because of the circumstances through which he left Old Trafford under something of a cloud. I never had a problem with Carlos and I am speaking critically of him now only because of my understanding of the difficult jobs managers face.
“Carlos no doubt felt aggrieved, and I am sure he still does, but there are important principles at play here and there has to be a limit to what a head coach can tolerate. If a player refuses to go on the field and there is a clear attempt to defy the authority of the manager, then he has to react – and vigorously so. Management these days has become much more complicated, not least because of the enormous amounts of money players earn, and you cannot afford to pander to that kind of power.
“The City boss’s reaction was spot-on and sent a clear message to the rest of the players, not just at Eastlands but throughout the game. His handling of the situation distinguished him in managerial terms. I always admire the courage to do right, and that is what we are seeing here.”