City manager Roberto Mancini said Tevez’s career at the club was over after the Argentina striker refused to come off the substitutes’ bench in the second half of the 2-0 loss to Bayern Munich in Germany on Tuesday night.
While Tevez claimed it was all a misunderstanding, City started a disciplinary process on Wednesday night.
“Carlos Tevez has been suspended until further notice for a maximum period of two weeks,” City said in a statement. “The player’s suspension is pending a full review into his alleged conduct during Tuesday evening’s 2-0 defeat to Bayern Munich.
“The player will not be considered for selection or take part in training whilst the review is under way.”
The day had started with Tevez trying to distance himself from the apparent act of rebellion in Germany.
“I would like to apologize to all Manchester City fans, with whom I have always had a strong relationship, for any misunderstanding that occurred in Munich,” Tevez said. “They understand that when I am on the pitch I have always given my best for the club.
“In Munich on Tuesday I had warmed up and was ready to play. This is not the right time to get into specific details as to why this did not happen. But I wish to state that I never refused to play.”
Mancini, though, had stated: “He refused to play. I cannot accept this behavior from him. I decide the substitutions, not Carlos.”
Mancini wanted to bring Tevez on for Samir Nasri with about 30 minutes left and City already trailing 2-0.
“There was some confusion on the bench and I believe my position may have been misunderstood,” Tevez said. “Going forward I am ready to play when required and to fulfill my obligations.”
Mancini’s stance was supported by FIFA Vice President Jim Boyce, who described Tevez’s apparent petulance—broadcast live around the world—as“despicable.”
“His club would be better off without him,” Boyce told British broadcaster Sky Sports. “FIFA should have the power, as they do for drugs-related cases and other cases, to ban the player from taking an active part in football.”
If City fired Tevez for gross misconduct—as is in its power—he could potentially profit by receiving a lucrative signing-on fee at a new club.
“I don’t think it would be right if he could go and earn a considerable amount of money somewhere else,” Boyce said. “I would have no problems if some sanctions were imposed by FIFA … if Carlos Tevez does it, who’s to stop someone else doing it?”
The souring in relations has echoes of Tevez’s final days at Manchester United when he complained of a lack of playing time before bolting to rival City two years ago.
His career has been no less volatile at City, which has invested more than $1 billion on players since the 2008 takeover by Abu Dhabi’s Sheikh Mansour.
The 27-year-old Tevez captained City last season and lifted the FA Cup in May, the club’s first major trophy since 1976. The Wembley success came after Tevez asked to leave the club in January.
This summer, Tevez again publicly pushed for a transfer to be closer to his family in Argentina.
But no club met City’s reported 50-million pound ($79 million) fee. He has started just one Premier League game of six so far this season, playing 61 minutes in the Sept. 10 victory over Wigan.
“Carlos didn’t play at the start of the season because he didn’t do a preseason for three years,” Mancini said. “He is not ready to play.”
Tevez’s actions in Munich were even met with a sense of disapproval at the English players’ union.
“I think you are going to see a lot more instances of top players getting upset,” Professional Footballers’ Association chairman Gordon Taylor said.“They will either think they don’t deserve to come off, or not be happy at being asked to retrieve a situation.
“But it is part and parcel of being in a large squad. You have to be professional.”
Tevez’s arrival in England at West Ham from Brazilian club Corinthians in 2006 was mired in controversy.
It led to rule changes on third-party ownership and a string of bitter legal cases that saw the London club fined nearly $11 million.
Tevez joined Manchester United on a two-year loan deal from West Ham in the 2007 offseason, but left after two years despite winning the Champions League and Premier League to become Manchester City’s highest-paid player.