This week El Apache made his return to Argentinian football with his beloved Boca Juniors in a fairytale-esque transfer. The move back to his homeland will see him reunited with his boyhood club where he made his name as a footballer. Quite nice, really.
Tevez, now 31, left Boca Juniors in 2004 having made 75 appearances and scoring 26 goals. He was labelled by the Argentine press as the heir to Diego Maradona. With a billing like that, the striker had a list of clubs who were interested in acquiring his services – from French giants Paris Saint-Germain to Liverpool.
Juventus stated their intent this transfer window with the signings of Paulo Dybala from Palermo and Mario Mandzukic from Atletico Madrid, leaving little room for strikers and with rumours that Tevez was going to leave at the end of his contract in 2016, Juventus saw this as a chance to offload Tevez while he would still command a fee.
Carlitos, as he is known in Argentina, scored 39 league goals over his two seasons with the Old Lady. His intelligent runs and his ‘bulldog’ like approach made him a handful for opposition defenders, contributing 14 league assists. It’s a great shame that Tevez is calling time (for now) on his European adventure as its been a pleasure to watch his career grow, however, it’s hard to deny his heart is still in Buenos Aires – it never really left.
During his exodus from Manchester City he spent three months back home in Argentina, he took his family with him to enjoy what was a bizarre break from the game. Tevez said at the time he wanted to stay where he belonged and had enough money to do so. He argued he wouldn’t miss football because he would play his other beloved game – golf.
The forward’s career has been glittered with trophies including the Copa Libertadores, Champions League, Coppa Italia, FA Cup, League Cup and the Club World Cup. Added to these he has won the Premier League and the Serie A. Not too bad if you ask me. It’s a shame when it comes to the Argentinian national team his presence is overseen by the likes of Lionel Messi, Sergio Aguero and Angel Di Maria, however, Tevez has earned himself the ‘player of the people’ nickname by La Albiceleste faithful.
A possible discounted stay in Tevez’s career was his time in London with West Ham. This was his first venture into European football and was surrounded in controversy due to the third party ownership of both Tevez and fellow countryman Javier Mascherano. Despite only spending a year with the Hammers, Tevez is very much a crowd favourite. West Ham were facing relegation on the final day of the season and faced a near impossible task as they faced Manchester United. Tevez took responsibility and scored the only goal in a 1-0 victory to secure Premier League status.
The departures at Juventus don’t stop at Tevez. Midfield maestro Andrea Pirlo is reportedly on his way out with a move to the MLS the talk of the town. Highly prized golden boy Paul Pogba also seems to be heading for the exit door with potential suitors queuing up to acquire the Frenchman’s’ signature. Massimiliano Allegri is tasked with rebuilding the Turin club and may find replacing the consistency of Tevez hard to come by.
Were those who labelled Carlos Tevez as the next Diego Maradona were, on paper, wrong? Well, yes and no. Messi is the best player in the world and there is a very strong case he’s the best the world has ever seen and has overtaken Maradona, however elements of Maradona’s game can be seen in Tevez’s. The character and personality of Maradona can be seen in Tevez, his nomadic adventure around the world and trouble off the pitch are also similarities, although perhaps frowned upon by some.
Tevez is without doubt one of the best strikers we have seen in Europe. His eye for goal and willingness to work for his team is a combination fans love to see. A part of Carlito always remained in Buenos Aires and Boca, so his move comes as no surprise. Maradona also finished his career there, you know.
By Callum Read – @