Carlos Tevez has left doubts hanging over his future at Juventus despite coach Massimiliano Allegri’s belief the Argentine star will honour his contract with the Turin club.
Tevez scored his 18th Serie A goal this season with the opener in Juve’s 2-0 home win over Lazio on Saturday, which took their top-of-the-table lead to 15 points with seven games left.
But a celebratory “chicken dance” – which he first performed playing for Argentine giants Boca Juniors against bitter rivals River Plate in 2004 – as well as comments by Boca president Daniel Angelici this week claiming Tevez wanted to return to the club next season, have left fans wondering.
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Angelici set the rumour mill spinning when he claimed Tevez would quit Juventus a year before his contract expires, in June 2016, to return to Boca, where he was a youth player.
He was quoted by Gazzetta dello Sport as saying that Tevez’s “idea is to return, after so many years away, wear our shirt and play for two or three years”.
“He wants it and his family want it,” Angelici said. “In the space of a year and a half, a lot of things can change. But right now, that’s his idea.”
Tevez said: “There’s a lot of talk about me right now, but all I want to focus on is Juve. We are in great form and it’s not the right time to discuss my future. When I make a decision about my future, the fans will be the first to know.
“I’ve already said I want to retire wearing a Boca shirt, it’s my dream as well as my family’s.”
But a return to Argentina at this stage would be surprising for a player who, at age 31, “still has plenty to offer to European football”, according to Allegri.
Since joining the club in time for the 2013/14 season, Tevez revived his career having endured a turbulent end to his three-year spell at Manchester City.
While piling up the goals for Juve, Tevez has earned a recall to the Argentina squad. He has also been instrumental as Juventus bid to reach the semi-finals of the Uefa Champions League for the first time in more than a decade.
On Wednesday, Juventus can book a semi-final place if they draw away to Monaco in the second leg of their quarter-final.
Juventus have been keen to keep a lid on any transfer talk concerning Tevez, who has scored 26 goals in all competitions this season.
Tevez claimed his celebratory chicken dance on Saturday was a “promise to friends” but it did little to quell rumours of his return to Boca. “I’ll do the same if I score at Monaco,” he said.
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