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Friday, March 2, 2012
Tevez two weeks away from return

ESPN staff

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini claims a line has been drawn under the Carlos Tevez affair after the striker issued an apology, but he is still at least two weeks away from a first-team return.

Tevez returned to England last month, having been holed up in his native Argentina following a major bust-up with Mancini and club officials over his failure to warm up against Bayern Munich last year.

After failing to secure a transfer in January, Tevez returned and has been brought back into the fold after issuing an apology.

Mancini has held talks with the forward and claims everything is now fine after they worked through their differences.

Asked if the matter is now closed, Mancini said: "Yes. He did everything."

Tevez played 45 minutes for City's reserves against Preston this week and Mancini wants him to get more game time under his belt.

Mancini said: "I think he needs another two weeks and in this two weeks we put two or three games with the reserves as he needs to play.

"For him it is like pre-season, after two months it is not easy to play. At this moment he can't play but in two weeks maybe he can play."

Meanwhile, Mancini has urged striker Mario Balotelli to take heed of Italy coach Cesare Prandelli's warning. Balotelli was left out of the squad for Italy's international friendly defeat by the United States this week with Prandelli publicly citing the player's indiscipline as a reason.

Mancini has already asked his maverick forward to focus fully on his game for the closing months of the campaign and he hopes Prandelli's remarks reinforce the message.

Mancini said: "I think it is correct. We know that Mario is a top player but he should improve his behaviour. For the national team it is important. When you go to play in the European Championship and you only play three or five games, you should have good behaviour.''

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