Tevez`s No.32 shirt allocated to reserve goalie Pantilimon

London: Carlos Tevez`s No.32 shirt was allocated to reserve goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon when Manchester City played at Blackburn Rovers in the Premier League on Saturday, another indication that he is unlikely to play for City again.

City fans also displayed banners saying "Tevez Out" aimed at the 27-year-old Argentine striker.

Tevez was missing at Ewood Park, serving a two week club suspension for allegedly ignoring manager Roberto Mancini`s instructions to come on as a 56th minute substitute against Bayern Munich in the Champions League on Tuesday.

City lost that game 2-0 but bounced back on Saturday with a 4-0 win over Rovers with goals from Adam Johnson, Mario Balotelli, and substitutes Samir Nasri and Stefan Savic, who both scored their first goals for the club.

City are level on points with champions Manchester United at the top of the table, both unbeaten with 19 points from seven matches, though United are in first place with a goal difference of plus-19 compared to City`s plus-18.

Following Tuesday`s incident in Munich, Mancini said Tevez would never play for the club again and his City career "was finished" as far as he was concerned.

The club have started an inquiry and suspended him for the maximum two weeks allowed under Premier League rules.

But the fact Saturday`s official team sheet showed his shirt number was allocated to 24-year-old Romanian international goalkeeper Pantilimon, who has made one appearance for City in the League Cup against Birmingham City, was a telling point.

City`s assistant manager David Platt told reporters: "We needed to concentrate totally on this game.

"From having the day off on Wednesday after coming back from Munich, we came in on Thursday and put everything to bed -- the performance and everything else that went with it.”

Asked if City`s lawyers were preventing him talking about the Tevez situation, Platt replied:

"Unfortunately for many many reasons, we can`t really go into that. We just want to concentrate on what is happening out on the pitch and fortunately that was what we have done today."

The only blot on an otherwise good afternoon for City was that Argentine forward Sergio Aguero injured his groin, but might not miss any matches for City with the international break coming up next weekend.

Bureau Report

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