Manchester City defender Gael Clichy believes controversial forward Carlos Tevez has been the club’s best player so far this season.
It looked as if Tevez’s City career was over when he fled home to Argentina after refusing to warm up as a substitute as his side slipped to defeat against Bayern Munich in the Champions League last September.
Despite the relationship between club and player looking irreparable, Tevez returned last season to help City to a last-gasp Premier League title – and with three goals and four assists so far this season, Cllchy feels he can do it again.
“(Tevez) has been our best player so far this season. He’s scored goals, worked really hard. He’s just a great player,” Clichy told The Sun.
“What happened in Munich, and after, is nothing to do with me. It was between him and the boss.
“It’s all sorted now. Carlos in top form would be a great player for any team. Let’s hope he can carry on scoring.”
And Clichy suggested that while Tevez has fine individual attributes, the effect he has on his team-mates is one of his greatest strengths.
He added: “The passion he has for the game, the way he presses defenders, lifts the team – we need a player like this, so well done Carlos.
“We want players who bring something extra and he does that. He can make a big difference for us this season.”
City have a difficult Champions League group featuring Real Madrid, Ajax and Borussia Dortmund, but Clichy feels games such as their tie with the German champions on Wednesday can be the making of them.
Clichy said: “We’ve got four champions in our group, it’s a really difficult group but we are the champions of England.
“You want to play against the best teams all the way through. It’s a good way of challenging yourselves, finding out where we are.
“We feel we’re progressing from last season. That was a tough group but this one is probably a bit harder. If we can play the way we know we can, everything is possible.”
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