Tevez apologies, withdraws appeal. What now?

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 27: Carlos Salcido of Fulham challenges Carlos Tevez of Manchester City during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester City and Fulham at the City of Manchester Stadium on February 27, 2011 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)

Some five months, countless column inches and millions of pounds later we finally have the apology from Carlos Tevez, per the official site:

Carlos said, "I wish to apologise sincerely and unreservedly to everybody I have let down and to whom my actions over the last few months have caused offence. My wish is to concentrate on playing football for Manchester City Football Club."

Carlos has also withdrawn his appeal against the Club's finding of gross misconduct which was due to be heard by a Premier League panel in the coming days.

It is little under a week since Tevez returned to the country and headed back to the club and whilst the suggestion was that he would provide the apology Roberto Mancini demanded, until now there has been no official word from the Tevez camp.

Now that the apology has arrived, however sincere and well meaning it may actually be, Tevez - theoretically at least - seems clear to once again feature in the side, but will it be so straightforward? Putting aside any lingering ill-feeling Mancini, players and fans may have towards him the overriding concern which hasn't been written about to any degree is quite how he fits back into the side - assuming that his fitness is such to allow this.

I am currently looking at some of the offensive numbers that City have put up over the past three seasons (i.e. since Tevez arrived at the club) and whilst his influence on the side in 2009/2010 and 2010/11, the side in 2011/12 has undoubtedly progressed and moved on from a position where Tevez was the pivotal presence; as he went so did City.

This season, the additions of Sergio Aguero and Samir Nasri have broadened the style. Add in a maturing (yes, really) Mario Balotelli and goals (albeit fitfully) from Edin Dzeko and there is no longer the requirement for Tevez to hoist the side on his back an drag them over the finishing line.

At best, with only a third of the season remaining, Tevez you'd think (especially after not being named in the Europa League squad) will have to be content with a place on the bench (will the irony be lost on him) with no guarantee of minutes or involvement as City head towards the final stages of the season with the Premier League title a very realistic proposition.

Will that be enough to satisfy Tevez though? Given that he (and his camp) have little room to manoeuvre, for both his short and long term future it will likely be that Tevez has little choice but to accept whatever role Mancini has planned for him.

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