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The Tevez Case

John Simkin

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Great article by East Stand Martin on the Tevez Case:


This passage is especially worth considering:

Let’s focus on the reported main conclusion of the learned Judge Lord Griffiths, no doubt an avid football fan with an encyclopaedic knowledge and long-term understanding of the game:

"On the totality of the evidence, we have no doubt that West Ham would have secured at least three fewer points over the 2006/07 season if Carlos Tevez had not been playing for the club.

"Indeed, we think it more likely than not on the evidence that we heard, that even over the final two games of the season, West Ham would have achieved at least three points less overall without Mr Tevez. He played outstandingly well in the two wins that West Ham secured in those last two games."

How convenient. 3 points less. Nothing to do with the fact that the difference was exactly that between West Ham and Sheffield United. Why not 4 points? Why not 6? Come to think of it why not 2 points given that if Tevez hadn’t scored at Old Trafford we would have still got a draw, which would have been enough to stay up?

Football as we know is a game of opinions. It’s also about hypothetical situations. What if Lenny Scaloni had shielded the ball out in the FA Cup Final rather than hoofing out for a throw? The point is this. No Judge, no matter what expensive school and elite university he went to, no matter whether he can read Latin, do big sums or play Beethoven’s 5th without a music score, no Judge can convince anybody that he knows exactly what the contribution of an individual player expressed in points can be.

By the way, Your Honour. Just in case that your posh school concluded that ‘Association Football’ was NOCD (‘not our class darling’), points are won on a football pitch by not conceding goals as well as scoring them. It is a team game which involves a goalkeeper, defence, midfield, attack and manager who makes tactical plays and substitutions.

I was at every one of those final nine games that year home and away. I’ll tell you who kept us up. It was Robert Green at The Emirates. It was our magnificent defence at just about all of those games except when the blue filth humbled them at the Boleyn Ground and we got slaughtered at Bramall Lane – irony of ironies – with Carlos Tevez on the pitch. It was our midfield, battling for their lives. It was even a linesman at Ewood Park who gave a goal when Tevez should have really cost us a goal by getting in the way stupidly of a goal-bound shot.

Another small point, Your Honour. Have you actually thought about whether Mr Tevez and his pal Javier might have been at the root of why West Ham was struggling in the first place? This is the point made earlier – the deal was not related to football, it was related to our Chairman getting sweaty palms about selling our club. I was at the game when Tevez first scored. It sent me radio rental as it was against the renegade outfit now at its rightful level at the foot of the league table. A game that we lost, in March 2007, 7 months after Tevez arrived. But the reality was that like the situation which led to the recent departure of Kevin Keegan and Alan Curbishley, these players were dropped in out of the ether into our club and it totally disrupted the team. Your Honour, these two players were a negative force for a large part of the season, you are making the schoolboy error of just looking at the end of the season.

You have also forgotten something else. The small matter of how every other club played during that whole season. A huge amount of permutations. Have you thought about the contributory negligence of Sheffield United in playing like a bunch of tw*ts in the run in? 8 points out of 33 in their last 11 games. Who cost Sheffield United three points more directly, Carlos Tevez or Mr Neil Warnock in fielding a below strength team in their game against Manchester United? You tell me.

The comments on the article are also very good. For example, the following by Ed Stez:

Whatever the final outcome of this sorry mess I can see only one way forward, that is for WHU to sue the FA for the injury suffered to Dean Ashton.

If he hadn't been injured playing for England, then we would not have needed Teves and all, and we would not have been in this situation.

The injury sustained while on England duty has since caused him to miss a number of games (in fact season would be nearer the mark) so if we can be sued in this type of retrospective manner, why can we not sue them for the costs of relegation, loss of earnings and all the other factors that having a great player (probably would have gone on to be the greatest ever footballer ... I can see what the future held if only he hadn't been injured by looking into my Mystic Meg crystal ball).

Why not?

Seems like everyone else seems to be able to predict the future ... or what would have been.

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