Tuesday night saw Carlos Tevez take to the field for the first time since his December move to Chinese Super League outfit Shanghai Shenhua, making a 20 minute cameo towards the end of their 1-0 victory over Gwangju Sangmu.
Many Boca fans were still left wondering, however, why their top goalscorer chose to leave them in the lurch last month, without any explanation, press conference or farewell.
Well, former teammate and current Boca centre-half Fernando Tobio has gone some way in providing the answers in an interview with Olé.
“I noticed that whenever we lost a game, the blame would fall to Tevez. It was all Tevez, anything bad was down to Tevez… they [los hinchas] went after him a few times, and that accumulated as well. That’s what led him to take the decision.”
Having emerged at Vélez before enjoying a spell at Brazilian side Palmeiras, Tobio arrived at Boca around the same time as Tevez back in 2015. The two formed a close relationship, perhaps helped by the defender’s relatively low profile within the squad.
Interestingly, Tobio was the only member of Boca’s entire staff to receive an invite to Tevez’ wedding ceremony in Uruguay last month, which, in hindsight, perhaps puts Carlitos’ decision to move on into perspective. Tobio describes the isolation Tevez felt towards the end of his tenure:
“He looked uncomfortable, so I understand his decision to go and play in China. He decided together with his family. Here, all eyes were on him. He was suffering huge pressure, and so it was a very demanding year and a half.”
“He took the decision with his family and it’s understandable, because at the end he didn’t look 100% and he always had to be. He’s an example for young kids, for everyone that’s at the club and for people outside as well.”
Asked about this Saturday’s pre-season Superclásico against River Plate in Mar del Plata, the 25 year-old affirmed that “friendlies don’t exist against River. ‘Friendlies’ are what they say for television. Inside we know we have to win.”
Just last November, Boca triumphed 4-2 over their rivals, a game in which Tevez scored twice to see los Xeneizes come back from behind to win.
Even without him, Boca fans will be confident of a repeat this time out after seeing River 1-0 defeat to minnows Aldosivi last night.