Chinese fans round on ‘rat’ Carlos Tevez after holiday barb

A Shenhua spokesman told AFP on January 5, 2018 that the club was in discussions with the former Manchester United, Manchester City and Juventus striker to end his contract. (AFP)
Updated 17 January 2018
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Chinese fans round on ‘rat’ Carlos Tevez after holiday barb

SHANGHAI: Furious Chinese football fans branded Carlos Tevez shameless and “a rat” on Wednesday after the Argentine striker described his ill-fated spell at Shanghai Shenhua as a “holiday for seven months.”
The 33-year-old struggled for form and fitness during a disastrous stint in China, where he was among the best-paid players in the world on a reported weekly salary of 730,000 euros.
He brought his Chinese nightmare to a premature end when he returned to Boca Juniors earlier this month and on Monday joked with Argentine television channel TyC Sports: “It’s fine because I was on holiday for seven months.”
That prompted an outpouring of anger on Chinese social media, with fans of a number of Chinese Super League (CSL) clubs rounding on the man often disparagingly labelled “very homesick boy” in the Asian country.
“Football hooligan, please get your arse out and never return to China again. Scum,” wrote one on Weibo, China’s equivalent of Twitter.
“I wonder if there is anyone more shameless than him,” added another.
Tevez missed half of Shenhua’s CSL games injured, out of form or out of shape, and when he did play he failed to justify his hefty pay cheque, scoring just four league goals.
As well as hitting out at Tevez, whose previous clubs include Manchester United, Manchester City and Juventus, Chinese fans also said Shenhua should take same of the blame.
“After looking at Tevez’s interview my heart as a Chinese football fan is again deeply hurt,” wrote another on Weibo.
“While we are chasing Tevez like a rat crossing the street, China’s (football) managers should also do some good self-reflection.”
In contrast, Tevez has been warmly welcomed back for his third stint at Boca and has a supporter in Argentine great Diego Maradona.
“He filled Santa’s sack with dollars and came back to Boca,” Maradona was quoted as saying by Argentine TV earlier this month.
Shenhua, who are keen to draw a line under the Tevez fiasco, declined to comment.


Premier League set to use VAR from next season

Updated 15 November 2018
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Premier League set to use VAR from next season

LONDON: The Premier League is set to use the Video Assistant Referee system from next season after clubs “agreed in principle” to the move on Thursday.
During a meeting attended by key members of all 20 Premier League clubs, officials were presented with an update on the non-live VAR trials taking place.
They were also given “key learnings” from VAR’s use in the FA Cup and League Cup this season.
VAR was used at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, where 335 incidents were checked by VAR officials, and is already underway in some other European leagues.
A formal Premier League request will now be made to the International Football Association Board and FIFA, the world governing body.
A statement from the Premier League said its testing program would continue for the rest of the season, “with a continued emphasis on those Saturday afternoons which have several matches being played concurrently.”
How VAR decisions are communicated to fans in the stadium will be addressed, with the development of a “clear protocol” to be established.
In April, Premier League clubs voted against the introduction of VAR for the 2018-19 season.
But there have been growing calls from managers and players for VAR to be introduced into the English top-flight for several years.
On Saturday, Southampton forward Charlie Austin called for VAR after he was denied a goal for offside against Watford, a decision he called a “joke.”
Also last weekend, Slavisa Jokanovic, since sacked as Fulham manager, was furious after Aleksandar Mitrovic was denied a goal by a controversial offside decision, with Liverpool going straight down the other end to take the lead.
VAR is used to check goals, penalties — both awarded and not, direct red cards and cases of mistaken identity when a player is wrongly booked or sent off.
The referee has the information relayed through his earpiece by the VAR team.
For some incidents, he can review the footage on a pitch-side television monitor before deciding whether to change his initial call.